THE Thurrock Conservative shadow portfolio holder for crime, cllr Andrew Roast has expressed his concerns regarding the cuts to Essex Police.
Cllr Roast said:
"I believe the proposed cuts to our police service are a slap in the face to the many hard working front line officers we have here in Thurrock who work tirelessly 24/7, and to our law abiding residents who are deeply concerned about the implications. I’m a resident and have 35 years experience in policing at different levels in London. I share their concerns.
"There is much police work done in areas most of us don’t see or experience daily for example internet crime, complex frauds and serious crime. It’s here the police need to be ‘smart’ in their approach to increasing changes in technology by those avoiding detection.
"What we do see and hear about daily are anti-social behaviour in our towns, criminal damage, burglaries and theft of our vehicles. It’s these crimes that are at the forefront of people’s minds, and it’s these crimes that I want Essex Police to put resources into and fight vigorously. Nothing ‘smart’ just common sense and it may help in keeping the confidence and support we need in our police.
"I have no issues with our old and tired money pit police stations being sold, providing they are replaced with something more efficient. There are real benefits of every town having a static visual police presence, and I would like Essex Police to look more at this in terms of shared buildings in communities.
"The reduction of front line officers, concern me the most. Patrolling officers rely on criminal intelligence and gut instinct to stop the car or person that prevents criminal activity taking place. Reduce the numbers, reduces the opportunities they have.
"Reducing the numbers may also have an effect on response times and those found and charged with criminal activity (clear ups).
"So in summary, I will be asking The Chief Constable of Essex Police to please look again at our police stations and protect the front line officer numbers at all costs.