For all of us, feeling safe in our homes and in our neighbourhoods is one of the most important things in life. But all too often, when I talk to people they tell me how worried they are about crime in Enfield. It’s no surprise.
Only last night there was another report of a stabbing on Green Street, in Enfield North. This follows the fatal and horrific attack which took place near Durants Park, in front of young children, last Saturday.
Over the past seven years, cuts by the Conservative Government has meant that Enfield has lost 48 police officers and 140 PCSOs. In the past year alone, we have seen a rise in violent crime of over 7%.
It’s just not good enough. Spreading resources this thinly is unfair both to the public and to the police. We now face a situation where Enfield has just over 500 uniformed officers to protect a population of 330,000 people. Police officers and PCSOs put themselves in danger every day to protect our community, yet they are being forced to work under increasing and unacceptable pressures.
It doesn’t matter what punishments or penalties you put in place if you haven’t got police on the streets, catching criminals.
I made sure that Enfield was one of the first places in the country to introduce Safer Neighbourhoods Teams. And I am working hard to restore the number of Safer Neighbourhoods Teams to the level that existed before 2010. I have been working closely with the Enfield Borough Commander and with the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, from whom I have secured a commitment that every ward in Enfield will have a second dedicated officer patrolling the streets by the end of 2017.
But there is only so much that we can do to make our communities safe, in the face of such savage Government cuts to the Metropolitan Police budget.
That’s why I’m demanding that the Government urgently take action to address this situation and that more funding is made available to our police, so they can protect our streets. I have written to the Home Secretary and the Met Commissioner about these important issues for our community.
The best way to cut crime is to have bobbies on the beat, deterring people from breaking the law in the first place. That’s why I’m fighting for our local police teams. Cutting crime is my top priority, not cutting the police.
To support my community campaign to increase the number of police officers in Enfield, please sign my petition.