We must protect Morley Police Station

We keep being told by the Government that the huge cuts to police budgets won’t impact on front line policing. Yet in every meeting I have with local officers and police chiefs they tell me different – that they are being stretched to the absolute limit.

I’ve been saying for over a year that David Cameron’s cuts to police budgets are going too far and will damage frontline policing. We already know we are set to lose 800 police officers across West Yorkshire.

But the real consequences of the Government’s 20% cuts to police budgets are only now becoming clear. Just last week I’ve heard some very worrying news about plans for our local police station here in Morley.

Because now the Government is forcing the closure of our local police helpdesks. As a result of cuts to budgets, the opening hours of our local Morley police station are set to be cut back, and closed completely on Saturday.

This is unacceptable. Here in Morley, we have a great neighbourhood policing team and a fantastic local station. Crime round here has been falling over recent years. But it’s been falling because we have a strong local policing team, and a staffed police station. That’s where people go to report suspected crimes and criminals, incidents affecting them or their families, problems with neighbours.

As a result of decisions being made by national government, this may all be about to change. I am very worried about what these cuts and closures might mean – and I will be campaigning hard to stop them.

I accept that West Yorkshire Police chiefs are being put in an impossible position. How can they implement such big cuts in budgets without it affecting the frontline?

We’ve warned ministers repeatedly that their cuts are unsustainable and will damage frontline policing and we’re seeing the consequences of that in Morley.

So I will be having urgent meetings with local and regional police chiefs to find out what else can be done to keep Morley police station open.

And just as I did a couple of weeks back when a local delegation of officers came to London to protest at the cuts being made to policing, I’ll continue to meet regularly with ordinary officers and back their campaign to stop deep cuts which are putting local policing at risk.

Morley Police Station needs to be open to the public.  Anyone who wants to add their support to my campaign to protect our local police station here in Morley should email me ed@edballs.com or write to me at Albion Chambers, Albion Street, Morley LS27 8DT.

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Posted May 30th, 2012 by Ed