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Community Support Officers: Kent

Volume 461: debated on Monday 18 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many police community support officers were originally planned to be in post in Kent in March 2008; and how many are now expected to be in post on that date. (143440)

To achieve a national target of 24,000 police community support officers (PCSOs) Kent Constabulary would have employed 571 PCSOs by March 2008. A written ministerial statement on 27 November announced changes to this plan in the light of the progress that the police service has made towards delivering neighbourhood policing and requests from the service for greater flexibility. Kent Constabulary were accordingly due to have 382 PCSOs by 30 April 2007 as their share of the national target—which the police service achieved—of 16,000 PCSOs.

It is open to Kent and other forces, depending on local circumstances and resources, to increase the number of PCSOs further if they consider it appropriate to meet the neighbourhood policing needs of their communities, but there is no expectation on them to do so. The aim now is to have a dedicated neighbourhood policing team embedded into every area in England and Wales by April 2008.