After extensive contacts with the Mayor of London and the Home Secretary, Theresa Villiers, MP for Chipping Barnet, has gained assurances that dedicated ward teams of police officers will be retained with at least one police officer and police community support officer attached to each ward in Barnet, guaranteed for the next 12 months.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, made this commitment as part of a wider plan to make neighbourhood policing the centre of fighting crime in London. This was welcomed by Theresa Villiers MP and local campaigner and councillor, Dan Thomas, both of whom have pledged to make tackling crime and anti-social behaviour a priority.
Theresa Villiers said: “This is reassuring news. I have been in regular touch with the Mayor and the Home Secretary over recent months taking up the concerns of residents about policing. I welcome the fact that the Chancellor, the Home Secretary and the Mayor have listened. This fresh commitment by the Mayor to neighbourhood policing follows on from the Chancellor’s announcement that police budgets will be protected for the next four years at least. That is only affordable because the Conservatives’ long term economic plan is delivering economic recovery.”
“We are a place where every ward has its own identity, and when it comes to gathering intelligence, solving problems and relating to communities, one area can have a completely different set of needs to another. I will keep working to ensure that these needs are met.”
Dan Thomas, local campaigner and Conservative candidate for the Greater London Assembly, said “As a local councillor, I have been working on issues relating to community safety for nine years. It really matters to people that they have a dedicated police officer who knows their ward and knows their area. Although crime is falling in Barnet, a local police presence is just as important as ever and this announcement will ensure community policing continues.”