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Community Policing: Staffordshire

Volume 498: debated on Monday 2 November 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of neighbourhood policing schemes in (a) Staffordshire and (b) Tamworth constituency. (296109)

Neighbourhood policing is central to providing a police service that is responsive to local crime and antisocial behaviour (ASB) concerns. Since 2002 we have invested over £1 billion to ensure that there is now a Neighbourhood Policing team in every neighbourhood, including in total more than 13,500 officers and 16,000 PCSOs. In December 2008, we introduced the Policing Pledge, which outlines commitments that the police service have made to the public, including minimum response times, holding monthly meetings to understand local concerns and providing regular updates on action taken to deal with those concerns.

The latest British Crime Survey (BCS) figures released in October 2009 show an improving trend that, nationally, 50 per cent. of the public now agree that the antisocial behaviour and crime issues that matter locally are being dealt with. In October 2009, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary published a report on the progress of all forces in delivering the pledge. The report graded Staffordshire police as “fair”.

It is for individual police forces and authorities to ensure the effectiveness of neighbourhood policing in their area. The Government will hold forces to account for progress through the single top-down target that antisocial behaviour and crime issues that matter locally are being dealt with.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary has inspected every force in England and Wales to assess their capabilities in delivering Neighbourhood Policing and Developing Citizen Focus. HMIC's assessment in September 2008 was that all forces, including Staffordshire police, had met this standard.