Number of front-line police in Cambridgeshire increasing, new figures show
- Credit: Archant
More bobbies are on the beat in Cambridgeshire as the force seeks to tackle increased levels of violent crime, according to latest figures.
The county force has gained 44 front line officers over the last three years, to deal with an 83 per cent increase in violent crime.
Figures from the Home Office show that the 44 officers, in roles categorised as ‘visible operational front line’, have been added to the force between March 2015 and this year.
Police face rising violence in Cambridgeshire with news that in the 12 months to March this year, 16,723 violent crimes were recorded.
This is up by 83 per cent compared to 2015.
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A Home Office spokesman said: “Forces are changing how they deliver local policing to reflect the priorities of local people and so that they can respond better to the changing nature of crime.
“They recognise effective community engagement is more than just having a visible police presence. Prevention, partnership working, problem-solving and safeguarding the vulnerable remain key.
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“Decisions about front line policing, and how resources are best deployed, are for Chief Constables and democratically accountable police and crime commissioners.
“Most have already set out plans to either protect or increase front line policing this year.
“Last year, the minister for policing and the fire service spoke to every force about the changing demand they face and we are helping with a £460m increase in overall funding 2018/19, including increased funding to tackle counter-terrorism and increased funding for local policing through council tax precept.”
The Home Office said that a number of ‘non-visible front line’, like those involved in intelligence gathering operations, dropped in Cambridgeshire from 583 in 2015 to 508 this year.
John Apter, chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said: “Neighbourhood officers represent the backbone of policing in this country – local officers who are the ‘eyes and ears’ of the service, providing a reassuring presence on the streets helping to detect and prevent crimes.
“As we lose neighbourhood officers we lose the vital investigative and intelligence-gathering roles they perform in our communities.
“The Government has to acknowledge that as violent crime increases, and with the ever-present threat of terrorism, the cuts to the service are coming home to roost and it is our communities that are suffering as a result.”