Why can’t we afford to pay for policing?

The Her Majesty's Border Agency vessel H...
HMCC Valiant

It is one of those sixty million dollar questions that so many have failed to adequately and fully answer over recent years and months, me included probably…

I’ve long-held the belief that in certain respects, it’s also a question that many have not actually been minded to find a definitive answer to, until now.

Whilst successive governments were continually throwing money (that we didn’t actually have) at half-baked solutions to policing problems all was ok with our lot. However, many of those ‘solutions’ were in effect, devised by self-interested and self-motivated senior police officers who were happy to aquess to the demands of similarly motivated politicians. Now they’re all trying to pick up the pieces and find someone to blame!

The public purse is now finally empty and what do we do? We throw our hands in the air in disbelief, and seek to blame our predecessors whilst attempting to place sticking plasters over gaping wounds in the framework of our failing public sector. All because of money and mostly, because of how it has been wasted and mismanaged in the past. Add all the ‘new’ costs of policing, previously unknown or often ignored, to the resulting equation and you can finally start to understand the predicaments we face. 

Back in January 2010 the Thin Blue Line grasped a politically hot potato and reported on a subject that too many shy away from. Many say or do nothing because of fear. Fear of being branded a bigot or racist or, they are simply worried about their personal career prospects after a run in with the diversity police.

In his article ‘The Uncomfortable Truth about UK Immigration’, the author (rightly) seeks to point out the many issues having a profound and negative impact upon policing costs, not to mention our nation and its society as a whole. Immigration policies as they currently stand, are in many ways, actually producing unseen (or unvoiced) negative impacts on our society.

European migrants are committing more than 500 crimes a week in Britain and officials are powerless to deport many of them…. (telegraph.co.uk)

Like the author of the following comments, I am more than happy to live and work in a multi-cultural society. I have friends and colleagues from all manner of ethnic and religious backgrounds. I embraced the value of diversity long before anyone told me I had to, or face the consequences of criminal prosecution. However, as Steve Bennet points out, perhaps the time has come for us to rethink some of our policies on immigration?

The Thin Blue Line: …There are those that say (including certain diversity obsessed Chief Officers of Police), that crime has not risen disproportionately when measured against the population increase. HOGWASH! The fact remains, that these are additional crimes committed by visitors to this country, who abuse the hospitality and generosity extended to them. At the moment, the criminal fraternity, including the law breaking element of the foreign national community is laughing at the farce of British justice… (Read more)

Irrespective of the undoubted negative impacts upon the public purse, failure to finally do something about the issues is no longer an option, it simply plays into the hands of the warped minds behind such bigoted and misguided far right organisations like The British National Party and extremist English Deffence Legue. More importantly at present, it also provides some true background to the costs of policing our nation.

In many ways, we are fast approaching the circumstances which led to the birth of other extremist and nationalistic organisations in modern history. Adolf Hitler’s German Nazi Party and Pol Pot‘s Khmer Rouge were in many ways, born out of a loss of cultural identity, a feeling of no longer belonging to or being a part of the society you were born into. Organisations that capitalised and grew on misunderstanding and mistrust…

Is this really what we want for our modern culturally diverse and tolerant society?

One thought on “Why can’t we afford to pay for policing?

  1. Dave… another related article from the Telegraph…
    Concerns over foreign crime wave
    A foreign crime wave is sweeping Britain after arrests of migrants almost doubled in just two years. By Tom Whitehead, Home Affairs Editor 7:00AM 05 Apr 2011

    Police arrested more than 91,000 foreigners suspected of crimes last year – the equivalent of 250 a day – compared with less than 52,000 in 2008.

    Rural areas, which have seen large influxes of new migrants, have been particularly hit with one force seeing arrests soar from just 27 to almost 5,000 since 2006.

    The figures, released under Freedom of Information, have fuelled concerns over how Labour’s immigration policies have impacted on communities and services.

    And the true figure could be twice as high as less than half of police forces responded.

    Chief constables have already warned that a rising number of foreign criminals has put huge pressure on resources such as officer time and translation costs.

    One rank and file leader last night revealed it can take an officer up to six hours just to issue a caution to a foreign offender who does not speak English.

    The growing trend comes as the police service faces cuts of up to 20 per cent over the next four years with thousands of officers likely to be lost.

    One MP last night described the figures as “deeply concerning” while police chiefs warned a “growing number of new communities” has made crime patterns more complex.

    Information from 19 police forces show that in 2010 some 91,234 non-British nationals were arrested for crimes including murder, burglary and sexual offences.

    That was a 76 per cent increased on the 51,899 arrested in 2008.

    The rise coincides with a sharp increase in the number of migrants coming to live in the UK since the European Union expanded in 2004 to take in eight former Eastern Bloc countries including Poland.

    Arrests of foreigners made by the Metropolitan Police increased from 24,264 in 2008 to 58,870 in 2010 – up by 143 per cent.

    Rural areas also showed huge increases notably Cambridgeshire Constabulary which made 27 arrests in 2006 and 4,803 in 2010.

    Durham Constabulary suffered a 629 per cent rise from 65 in 2006 to 474 in 2010 and Humberside Police increased by 138 per cent up from 865 to 2,055.

    Arrests by Kent Police increased by 283 per cent from 1,075 to 4,119, while Surrey Police saw a rise from 1,959 to 2,079 – up six per cent.

    If the trend was repeated across all 52 forces in the UK it is estimated that over 750,000 foreign crooks have been arrested since 2006.

    Hugh Robertson, Conservative MP for Mid Kent said: “These figures are deeply concerning for anybody who lives in Kent and place a very unwelcome extra burden on our police forces.”

    Nick Cowan, crime researcher for think tank Civitas, added: “To some extent with an open labour market you are going to end up with some undesirables which is a shame.”

    Pete Smyth, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation, said migration has had a “huge” impact on police resources.

    He said: “It is a problem when you get someone in who can’t speak English and we wait hours for an expensive interpreter to hear their side of the story.

    “Even in trivial cases where you might be giving just a caution officers could be off the street for five or six hours – which is a massive expense.”

    A spokeswoman for Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) said the high amount of foreign crimes has added pressure to already “stretched” police resources.

    She said: “The growing number of new communities has certainly brought greater complexity to the pattern of crime and have contributed to already stretched resources.

    “As police, we have to adapt all the time to deal with new and emerging problems.

    “However we pride ourselves on our strong relationships within our local communities and the way we deal with the issues that emerge.”

    Julian Huppert, MP for Cambridge, added: “Cambridge is experiencing rapid growth and we need Government investment if we are to manage that growth effectively.”

    Cllr Geoffrey Heathcock, a former JP in Cambridge, added: “The volume of violent crime linked to foreign nationals is deeply troubling and is another factor in the whole story of why the county, with a growing population pressure, needs a significantly better deal from the Government.”


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