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Liberal Democrats launch General Election plans on policing

The Liberal Democrats will today set out their General Election plans to put 3,000 more police out on the beat to cut crime.

Launching Safer Streets – More and Better Police during a visit to Durham today, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg and Liberal Democrat Shadow Home Secretary, Chris Huhne will reveal research showing that:

  • Police numbers have fallen in 18 out of the 43 police forces (42%) in England and Wales since 2005. Two thirds of these police authorities are currently controlled by the Tories and one third by Labour
  • The new officers proposed under Liberal Democrat plans could be expected to make an additional 27,500 arrests and solve more than 24,500 extra crimes each year in England and Wales alone

The extra officers, funded by the savings from scrapping ID cards, would be provided over the course of a Parliament with every area in England, Wales and Scotland benefiting.

The plans to cut crime through more and better policing also include:

  • Elected police authorities
  • Publishing detection data as well as crime data at ward level
  • A review of the restrictive terms and conditions for police officers, including introducing an annual fitness check for all officers on the beat

Commenting, Nick Clegg said:

“The Liberal Democrats are the only party that wants to cut crime by putting more police on the street.

“When only one in a hundred crimes ends up with a conviction in court, it is time for things to change.

“Labour and the Conservatives may talk tough but they are unwilling to make the crucial decisions to cut crime.”

Commenting further, Chris Huhne added:

“With so many forces seeing cuts in numbers, this is the right time to be promising a longer arm for the law.

“The Liberal Democrats would rather have more police officers and catch more criminals than continue with unnecessary and expensive ID cards.

“Getting more police on the beat and reforming the way they work is the only way to create safer streets.”

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