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Volume 478: debated on Thursday 26 October 1950

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress is being made with the recruitment of police; and if he is now satisfied at the rate of recruitment.

On 30th September, 1950, the authorised establishments of police forces in England and Wales were 70,837 and the actual strengths were 61,037; so long as so many vacancies remain to be filled, the position cannot be regarded as satisfactory. Between 1st March, 1950, and 30th September, 1950, the average monthly number of recruits accepted was 554 as compared with 602 during the preceding seven months from 1st August, 1949, when the improvements in police conditions recommended by the Oaksey Committee began to exercise an appreciable effect. The average monthly net increase in strength was, however, well maintained at 230 as compared with 238 and there has been a total net increase of strength of 3,281 since 1st August, 1949. I am glad to see small but encouraging improvements in both the monthly recruiting rate and the monthly increase in strength in the Metropolitan Police Force.