Since I became elected all people ask for is more police on the streets.
I made this a priority in the first budget that I set in 2017 and have been recruiting more police officers ever since.
Both through your Council Tax and via the government in general taxation we have will have been able to recruit record numbers of police officers of 3610. More than pre-austerity and the most ever recorded in the force's history. That's 686 extra officers since I set my first budget.
My job going forward will be to sustain those numbers without causing a further heavy burden on our council tax payers.
Some of the teams that have expanded so far because of this are:
- doubled the size of the roads policing team
- created the rural crime team
- more armed response officers
- a Neighbourhood Beat Officer for every police sector
- more general response officers
- An ability to run more focused campaigns on your priorities like Operation Loki (anti-social behaviour) and Operation Scorpion (drug dealing)
I want to see even more go into our neighbourhoods so that they are more visible to you.
I promised to secure extra funding for our higher crime areas and we have been successful in attracting £5.5million funding from the government from their Safer Streets Fund to make environmental improvements like more CCTV, street lighting, help points, bystander training to tackle violence against women and girls and street marshals. The successful areas are:
- Plymouth North Stonehouse and City Centre/Mutley Plain and the University of Plymouth campus
- Exeter City Centre and the University of Exeter campus
- Falmouth and the University of Falmouth campus
- Camborne and Redruth
One way that we can all help is by joining Neighbourhood Watch and keeping ourselves informed about crime prevention. Or reaching out to my Victim Support service if you need emotional support and advice 24/7 online or on the phone.