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'There is a lot of anger' - Solihull councillor speaks out over police cuts

CUTTING police budgets would leave officers utterly unable to cope with another outbreak of disorder, a borough councillor has claimed.

CUTTING police budgets would leave officers utterly unable to cope with another outbreak of disorder, a borough councillor has claimed.

Coun David Jamieson, leader of the Labour group, condemned Government plans to slash spending by 20 per cent over four years.

And he said there was a growing backlash from officers, who had found themselves “stretched to the limit” during last month’s riots.

Coun Jamieson, who has spoken to the Police Federation, which represents rank and file officers, said: “There’s a lot of anger.

“If the budget is cut then how will officers be able to cope, if something like this happens again in a year’s time?

“And there will also be problems with police not being able to investigate everyday crimes like burglary and motor theft.

“I’m fully in favour of cutting red tape where it’s to be found, but there comes a point where you can’t do that any more.”

The federation has also called on the Government to reconsider its proposed budget cuts. Now Coun Jamieson has challenged Solihull’s ruling Conservative group to write to the Prime Minister, and oppose cuts to policing.

Councillor Ken Meeson, Tory leader, said that he had recently been at a meeting with West Midlands Chief Constable Chris

Sims: “He did not mention the budget cuts in relation to the riots, and seemed quite relaxed about the police’s ability to cope.

“We have, however, voiced concern that the West Midlands seemed to be getting disproportionate cuts compared to elsewhere.”

 

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