Police Federation

More crime, more victims, fewer police officers

25 April 2019

The Government needs to talk less and do more as stark statistics further highlight the true extent of the violent crime epidemic gripping the country, says vice-chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales.

Police-recorded crime figures released today (25 April) by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) shows crime is continuing to rise in all but a handful of categories.

Over the year to December 2018 offences involving knives or sharp instruments went up by 6% to 40,829 making it the highest since records began.

Homicides are at a four-year high with 732 incidents being recorded – a 6% increase on 2017’s figures (which is a 12 percent increase if the terrorists in Manchester and London are excluded).

Sexual offences have soared by 10%, whilst stalking and harassment is up by 46% which is the largest increase out of any category.

Vice-Chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales Ché Donald said: “Despite the best efforts of our members, we have seen crime continue to increase, and the resultant demands placed on policing are unprecedented but unfortunately predictable.

“Crime across the board is going up, the only things that are not going up are police numbers, police pay and meaningful funding the Government should be investing in our police service so we can get on with tacking this highly concerning situation. These figures must shame them in to action.

“We repeatedly warned politicians that cuts have consequences and that there is a correlation between cutting police numbers and rising crime, but they recklessly ignored this fact and now the country is gripped by violent crime.

“How much more evidence do they need to accept we are in a crisis? How many more people need to become victims of crime? How many more families need to lose loved ones?”

The police service in England and Wales has lost almost 22,000 officers since 2010 a fact the Prime Minister Theresa May refuses to acknowledge has had an impact on rising levels of crime.

Mr Donald continued: “The Federation keeps highlighting the true effects of underfunding and under resourcing policing and arguing for more consistent, fair funding, which we will continue to do, so our hardworking officers have the resources to carry out the job they want to do at a standard they can be proud of - preventing and detecting crime, while keeping the public safe.

“This Government has continuously failed to listen to professionals who deliver policing but should at least listen to the public who are now saying crime is more of a concern than health. Crime is a priority for the public, so it must be a priority for the Government. It must act and it must act now,” he concluded.

The only offences which dropped are those involving firearms (2%), burglary (3%), bicycle theft (6%), shop lifting (3%) and criminal damage and arson (4%).

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