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Crime and Neighbourhood Policing | Commons debates

I gently remind the right hon. Member that the number of arrests has halved since his party came to power. Perhaps he should focus on that.

In the research of tens of thousands of people, only 25% of the public think the police do a good job of being visible in local areas, only 26% say the police do a good job of tackling antisocial behaviour, and only 24% say they do a good job of tackling crime. People even said that there is no point in investing in improving the community if it is just going to be vandalised by criminals. We agree: you cannot level up without tackling crime.

Where is the Government’s plan? Where is their righteous anger that it is poorer communities who are the greater victims of crime? Where is their apology for cutting 20,000 police officers, claiming for years it would have no impact whatever on crime and then rushing to replace them when they finally admitted that perhaps it did? Where is their apology to our police forces who are under greater pressure but are paid 20% less in real terms than they were in 2010? What is their plan? At the very least, surely they can support Labour’s motion today to put more police and PCSOs on our streets in our neighbourhoods? And how can they boast in their amendment that rape convictions have risen from one a day to one and a half a day?

A Labour Government will fix the mess this Government have created. Where Conservatives have dismantled neighbourhood policing, Labour will put 13,000 police and PCSOs back on our streets preventing and fighting crime. Where the Conservatives have weakened antisocial behaviour powers, Labour will bring in tougher punishments. Where the Tories have forgotten about our young people, Labour will prevent crime with youth workers in custody suites and A&E, and mentors in pupil referral units. Where the Government are making hard-working taxpayers foot the £5.1 billion excess bill for their own catastrophic mismanagement of the long-delayed new radio network, Labour will save millions from shared services and procurement. Where the Home Office pushes blame to local forces and never takes a lead, Labour will be an active Government legislating for national standards on policing, vetting and misconduct. Where the Government pay lip service to violence against women and girls, Labour will put RASSO units in every force and fast-track rape cases. Will the Minister respond to the question earlier from the shadow Minister, my hon. Friend the Member for Birmingham, Yardley (Jess Phillips)? Will the Government commit to the police going to every case of domestic violence, as well as every case of burglary? Where the Government stoke division on wokery, Labour will get serious about catching criminals. Where the Government ignore victims, Labour will put them at the heart of everything we do.

People are tired of feeling their problems will be ignored, and that their values of community and respect are being ground down by a Government taking a backseat on law and order. The next Labour Government will bring back security and respect to our communities. We will bring back public faith in policing, prevent crime, punish criminals and protect communities. It can’t come soon enough.