Christopher Whiteside MBE is Conservative County Councillor for the Egremont North and St Bees Division of Cumbria County Council. The division includes St Bees, Bigrigg, Wood End, Moor Row, part of the Mirehouse area of Whitehaven, and surrounding countryside.
He is also deputy chair (political and campaigning) of the North-West region of the voluntary wing of the Conservative party.
Chris lives and works in Copeland with his wife and family.
Thursday, April 29, 2021
Backing the police: fighting crime: keeping our communities safe
The Conservative government is giving our police the powers and resources they need to keep us safe by:
Recruiting nearly 9,000 new police officers over the last year, keeping our streets safe. We have already recruited 8,771 new officers, and we are on track to recruit 20,000 extra officers by 2023. As part of this year’s £636 million boost to the police funding settlement, more than £400 million will go towards recruiting additional officers.
Strengthening police powers, ensuring they have the tools and resources to cut crime and target persistent offenders. The PCSC Bill gives the police additional powers to get knives off our streets, creates a new criminal trespassing offence to stop unauthorised encampments from terrorising our communities, and provides greater powers to tackle non-violent protests that cause significant disruption to the public.
Boosting police funding by £636 million this year, ensuring our frontline officers have everything need to keep us safe. This brings total police funding up to £15.8 billion for 2021-2022, including £400 million to recruit 20,000 new officers by 2023, £914 million for counter-terrorism policing, and £1.1 billion to target national priorities such as reducing serious violence and clamping down on county lines.
Enshrining a new police covenant into law, enhancing support and protection for our frontline police officers. The initial focus of the covenant will be on physical protection, health and wellbeing, as well as support for families. It will also create a statutory duty for the Government to do more to support the police, both those currently serving and retired.
Delivering a £45 million Safer Streets Fund to tackle theft, robberies and burglaries in our towns. The money will go towards measures proven to cut crime including locked gates around alleyways, increased street-lighting and the installation of CCTV. This will stop offences that blight communities and cause misery to victims from happening in the first place.
Investing £65 million into dismantling county lines gangs, keeping our towns and children safe from drug gangs. In January 2021 we announced £40 million of new money to tackle county lines and drugs supply, bringing the total invested to £65 million since November 2019. The funding has already seen over 3,400 people arrested, more than 550 lines closed, more than £9 million street value of drugs and £1.5 million cash seized and more than 770 vulnerable people safeguarded.
Delivering £148 million of new investment to cut crime and protect communities from the scourge of illegal drugs. This funding represents a comprehensive drive to cut drug-fuelled crime and violence in communities as we build back our country safer after the pandemic. Our investment includes £28 million for Project ADDER that brings together the police and drug recovery services to target and reduce drug-related offending and drug use.
Delivering over £130 million to tackle serious violence and turn our young people away from crime. This funding includes £30 million to support the police to take targeted action in parts of England and Wales most affected by serious violence, as well as up to £23 million for a new early intervention programme that will help stop young people from being drawn into the cycle of violence.
Toughening up sentences for assaulting emergency workers, recognising the debt of gratitude the public feels towards them. In line with our manifesto commitment, we are bringing forward legislation to double the maximum sentence for those convicted of assaults on frontline staff including police officers, firefighters, and paramedics.
We have supported our police through coronavirus by:
Delivering an extra £30 million to help the police enforce coronavirus regulations, helping to protect the NHS and save lives. The £30 million funding will allow police forces to increase patrols in town centres, ensuring that people are complying with the new restrictions, particularly in high-risk areas.
Launching an income loss recovery scheme for police forces, help them to recover a proportion of income they have been losing due to the pandemic. The scheme will apply to sales, fees and charges where forces would usually generate income, such as policing of sporting fixtures or providing security at airports. The scheme will enable forces to recover 75p in every £1 of budgeted income lost due to COVID-19 restrictions this financial year, once forces have absorbed 5 per cent of those losses themselves.