6 October 2022
Calls for police officers to be given more time and better resources to concentrate on fighting crime have been backed by Derbyshire Police Federation.
Former chief constable of Greater Manchester Sir Peter Fahy has urged the Government to take action to reduce the demands faced by some forces who are struggling to deliver basic services because of their increased workload.
His comments came after police chiefs pledged to send officers to investigate all home burglaries as part of a new set of standards they hope will result in more crimes being solved and more offenders prosecuted.
Sir Peter told ITV’s Good Morning Britain: “The Government needs to remove from policing all these additional tasks that have been taken on.
“It is not just about the number of police officers, it’s what they do and whether they are given the freedom and the tools to concentrate on crime.
“At the moment most frontline operational officers are very frustrated that they can’t concentrate on crime and criminals because they are picking up lots of other jobs as well, covering for social services and mental health services.
“These are vital jobs but police officers are not actually trained to do them and they want to concentrate on crime and, while numbers are going up, a lot of those officers are inexperienced and need time to learn the craft and get to know local criminals and local patterns of crime.”
Derbyshire Police Federation chair Tony Wetton said increasing demands on policing had become a huge issue and was having a massive impact on the health and wellbeing of members.
He said: “I agree 100 per cent with Sir Peter Fahy on this. We need to see a significant reduction in workload before we can start to concentrate on the issues which are the most important to members of the public - solving crime, reducing offending and making their communities safer places.
“Officer numbers are increasing and that is important after so many years of cutbacks but that answers just one of the many issues faced by policing.
“Our members want to give the people of Derbyshire a modern, proactive police service they can trust and rely on but we need the help and support of other agencies to make that happen.
“It is clear that trying to be all things to all people is simply not working for the police service and officers have to get back to basics of catching criminals, solving crimes and making our communities better places to live in.”