For the eighth year in a row, front-line police funding across Greater Manchester is being cut despite a warning from the head of Greater Manchester police who has said his force is under “real strain” as a result of austerity.
Under current funding arrangements, by March 2020 the force would have 24% fewer employees than March 2010: a bigger cut than the average for England and Wales.
The Tory Government has said that the police would only get a funding increase next April if local areas raised their council tax, effectively pushing the responsibility for funding onto local taxpayers. However, even doing this would only cover a planned 1% pay increase for existing officers.
Labour's Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham, has accused the government of gambling with public safety by cutting the funding yet again. He said: “People are noticing the loss of visible policing in their communities and this dangerous decision will make that even worse. With the terror threat at its current level the government are gambling with public safety.
“After all they have been through, our police officers are entitled to expect better from their government but once again they have been let down.
Bury Labour Leader, Rishi Shori, added: "“The government are abdicating responsibility for public safety and making hard-pressed council tax payers pick up the bill. We've already lost 46 police officer across Bury since 2010, the police stations in Radcliffe and Ramsbottom have closed and there are reduced services elsewhere across the Borough. This all comes at a time when the public want to see more officers out on the beat keeping us safe and being supportive partners in our neighbourhoods.
Is it any wonder that crime rates are going up again after seeing sharp falls during the Labour Government years."