Ian Austin MP

Labour MP for Dudley North

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Austin questions Ministers over police cuts

Dudley MP Ian Austin has warned the Government against making further cuts to policing in the West Midlands.

There are fears that the Chancellor George Osborne will slash police funding by up to a fifth when he presents his Autumn Statement to Parliament this week.

Austin has slammed the proposals, saying that funding cuts of £130 million so far with another £130 million to come by 2020 have already resulted in the closure of Dudley’s police station and will force West Midlands police to lose up to 5,000 staff and officers compared to 2010.

The MP has now tabled a number of Parliamentary Questions asking Ministers how West Midlands Police can make further cuts when it has already been rated ‘outstanding’ for its efficiency by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of the Constabulary.

Austin has previously led campaigns to keep Dudley Police Station open and fight for a fairer police funding allocation for the West Midlands.  The West Midlands is more reliant on central government grants than other parts of the country, causing the region to lose a quarter of its budget in recent years compared to Surrey which has lost just 12%.

Ian Austin said:

“We all know savings have to be made, but West Midlands Police is already losing police stations and 5,000 staff as a result of the government’s decision to hand us the deepest cuts to policing in the country.

“The Government needs to think twice about the impact that even deeper cuts will have on a force that is already rated as ‘outstanding’ for cutting waste and spending money wisely.

“Local people want more police on the streets, more offenders brought before court and more criminals put in jail, so I will keep fighting for the West Midlands to get a fairer share of police funding.”

Ian has tabled the following Parliamentary Questions:

  • To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Office what assessment she has made of the efficiency of West Midlands Police.
  • To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Office what assessment she has made of the impact of further cuts to police funding on police forces that have been rated by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of the Constabulary as ‘outstanding’ for efficiency.
  • To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Office what steps her department is taking to reward police forces that have been rated by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of the Constabulary as ‘outstanding’ for efficiency.

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