Churchill Labour Councillors Shamim Talukder and Jason Williams, and Action Team member Andrea Mann, have written to Home Secretary Amber Rudd MP to protest at the further Government cuts to the Metropolitan Police budget which have led to plans to close the police counters at Belgravia Police Station.
Since coming to power in 2010, the Conservative government has cut the budget for the Metropolitan Police by £600 million and plans at least another £400 million in cuts to London’s police funding. Theresa May and Amber Rudd must end the austerity that has so damaged our vital public services and instead protect Westminster’s police numbers and front counters.
Cllr Jason Williams said: “The Belgravia Police Station is a vital community resource and the closure of the front counter service is a major blow. It will mean that residents will have to travel to Charing Cross Police Station – which is already a very busy station.”
Cllr Shamim Talukder said: “This closure will undoubtedly impact the most vulnerable members of our community, along with those who don’t have access to report crimes or raise concerns online.”
In a reply to Cllrs Williams and Talukder, the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Sophie Linden, reassured residents that the police will do all they can to maintain services in the face of further government cuts.
She said: “The front counter at Belgravia will be closed in December but the rest of the building will be retained. MPS operational leaders are clear: the closing of a police station does not mean the withdrawal of policing from a community, rather it means we can support officer numbers as much as possible at a time of real pressure on policing.
“The changes will not affect the service people receive when they dial 999. As they have been for many years, emergency response officers spend their shifts not in police stations, but out on patrol, being directed to incidents by the control room as and when they arise. We anticipate no impact on response times arising from these changes.”
Cllrs Williams and Talukder will be monitoring the situation and ask local residents to get in touch if they experience any problems or issues as a result of the front counter closing on firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also sign our petition about the front counter closure.