PCSO’s to bear brunt of financial cut backs


I want to say since I read the recent Chief Constable and Police & Crime Commissioners notice I have been mulling it over, and over in my head. I really do not believe that life and Policing will be better after they have swung the axe made another 2.500 police officers redundant. I just do not believe that we will have a safer place to live just because it is being told to us by a Chief Constable who has recently announced his own retirement!

I just don’t believe it.

Our Labour Party, no my Labour Party needs to start getting its campaigning hat on. Abolish our internal fights to the back of the hall and start speaking up for the electorate who are going to be at the sharp end of all this talk! The West Midlands Police Neighbourhood policing review is now underway. Can you believe that the force will need to look at saving £130m over five years….

The fact is that WMP are to have to face further job losses in the region of 2,500 over the next five years – making the organisation smaller than when it was formed in 1974!

Will you the public tell me that I am not going insane? The fact is that both the Police and Crime Commissioner are stating that they are confident policing will continue to protect our community! It’s not that I do not get complaints now. I darn well do. Its not a perfect service. They then tell us services may look and be delivered differently– both to respond to the financial challenges and growing threats like child sexual exploitation and online crime. An early phase of the WMP2020 work stream, due to report back in October, is looking at how calls will be responded to and investigated and how neighbourhood policing will continue to be delivered.

A key feature of this will include the role of police community support officers (PCSOs). For the force to be able to continue to protect the public by 2020 there will need to be a critical mass of warranted police officers to deal with the full range of policing challenges across the West Midlands.

Therefore the Police Support Officers are going to become as rare as the Northern Rhinoceros!

Now as one of the elected members for Wednesfield North, the questions I asked at the last Wednesfield North Police and Community Together meeting about “if the community was targeting the right  crime in the right areas of the Ward,” becomes even more pronounced.

“Police Support Officers are going to become as rare as the Northern Rhinoceros!”


Phil Bateman

Phil Bateman is Married to Mary and lives in Wednesfield North. He was a long serving local politician having served previously on the now defunct West Midlands County Council... read more


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