Listening to Church Langley’s Residents:
LAST Wednesday (07/02) in the House of Commons the annual Police Grant, which approves central police funding for each financial year, was voted on and subsequently passed. Since 2014, Essex Police’s allocation of funds from the national police grant has been cut by £11.7m between 2014/15 – 2017/18.
Is it no wonder then that speaking to local residents, there is common concern about the increase in anti-social behaviour in Church Langley? Whilst a total of 106 incidences of anti-social behaviour were reported in Church Langley between January to December 2016, that figure rose to 368 reported incidences between January to November 2017.
I don’t in any way intend to talk down the fantastic work that Essex Police do in Harlow. In December, it was reported that 273 reports of anti-social behaviour were investigated, and that “targeted foot patrols in the town centre between October and December…[have]…seen a drop in reported anti-social behaviour”. This is reflected in the reduction in the number of reported incidences of anti-social behaviour across Harlow last month. Likewise, it would be wrong of me to ignore the sustained and sincere public commitment by Chief Inspector Matt Cornish to address anti-social behaviour in Harlow.
Harlow Labour is doing its bit as well, the recent budget for Harlow Council has secured funding for 3 permanent community safety officers to work in shopping areas in town, helping create a safer space for all residents whilst also providing an approachable and friendly presence within the community.
However, the sustained cuts totalling £11.7m to Essex Police is something that cannot be ignored, as the overall budget is formed approximately two thirds by Government grant and one third local Council Tax. Conservative government policy has had a knock on effect, leading to a 7.62% rise in the policing precept within council tax, set by Essex’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC) Mr Roger Hurst.
In responding to the concerns of Church Langley’s residents’, I’ve written to Mr Hurst PFCC to ask what the consequence of government cuts will be for residents and have invited him to come to Church Langley and meet with local residents in a public meeting. There isn’t one single solution to tackling anti-social behaviour, but at as Labour’s Candidate for Church Langley I am committed to be part of the solution by bringing together our community and making sure everyone has the opportunity for their voice to be heard. This is an approach I would continue if elected a local councillor on Thursday the 3rd of May.
View my letter here:
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