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Editorial Tories can’t wriggle out of responsibility for police cuts

HOME OFFFICE Minister Ben Wallace claims that criminal kingpins who see themselves as “untouchable” will be relentlessly pursued by the full force of the state, but he fails to acknowledge government responsibility for this phenomenon.

Since the Tory Party took office in 2010 — for the first five years with their Liberal Democrat fellow neoliberals — cuts were applied as relentlessly to the police as other public service workers.

Some high-ranking police officers now pose gathering evidence of prejudice and “real” crime as alternatives, but this is a false dichotomy.

The fundamental problem, as shadow home secretary Diane Abbott points out, reiterating that Labour would recruit 10,000 more officers, is that the police have been denied adequate resources to do their job.

She notes that even Wallace accepts now that policing requires greater resources, while Chancellor Philip Hammond’s Budget offered nothing for neighbourhood policing which builds vital links with local communities and is a useful source of information on crime.

Grandiose headline-grabbing plans are useless without all-round better funding and a structure resting on better relations with local communities.


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