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Slough MP Comments on Police Cuts

Speaking from Manchester where she is attending the Labour Party conference, Fiona Mactaggart said, "Police Commissioner Anthony Stansfeld has threatened to cut 400 police: one in ten of our police officers as a result of government funding cuts. He and his Tory colleagues are failing to protect Slough and the Thames Valley from crime.”


The controversial Police and Crime Commissioner posts have hit the national news headlines over the last few months with the initial refusal of South Yorkshire Commissioner Shaun Wright to resign in the wake of the sex abuse scandal in Rotherham.


Thames Valley Police Authority faces another £38 million of budget cuts over the next three years.


Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls told the Labour Party Conference in Manchester that a Labour Government would abolish the posts.


“This money could be better spent investing in frontline police officers and helping to prevent crime in the first place.”


Police Commissioners were introduced by the Conservative Government in 2012.


Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner Anthony Stansfeld is paid £85,000 a year and was elected on a turnout of just 13.3 per cent in November 2012.


The next Police and Crime Commissioner elections in 2016 are expected to cost more than £50 million across the country.


Fiona has backed the findings of former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lord Stevens who called the new system flawed.


She said: “Police and crime commissioners have failed to provide any local accountability over police services. This is a costly vanity project by the Government. A Labour Government will cut his job, not the Bobbies on the beat.


“Thames Valley is simply too big an area for a single elected representative to be held to account, let alone one elected by fewer than 15% of residents.


“With public money still being tight we don’t need such a costly post in place.”