Police and Crime Commissioner Joy Allen has responded to the Chancellor’s Budget and spending review urging for fair funding to improve service delivery across County Durham and Darlington.
The Budget set out the government’s plans to build back following the coronavirus pandemic.
It said that it will fund the recruitment of the final 8,000 police officers to reach the government’s commitment of recruiting 20,000 new officers by 2023 and almost £500m cover the next three years to address the courts backlog and start to reduce the waiting times caused by Covid-19.
Joy Allen said: “As PCC I am legally responsible for maintaining an efficient and effective police service, along with the chief constable.
“For the last four years, Durham has been identified as a top performing force but, in reality, there are limits to what can be achieved without an increase in funding.
“Since 2010 the force has lost about 380 police officers due to cuts in government funding, but we are due to only get funding for 226 additional officers leaving us with still fewer officers than a decade ago, despite rising demand and more complex crimes.
“The Chancellor has announced an increase in funding for the police, but we will have to wait until December to find out how much extra we will get for County Durham and Darlington.
“Any additional funding is welcome, but it won’t be enough to pay for the increases we are seeing in energy costs, inflation and rising costs of technology.
“That is why I want the government to ensure adequate police funding is given to Durham and Darlington to fund the loss of all your police officers and to make sure that we can continue to improve service delivery.
“My police and crime plan is grounded in what the public want, but this requires fair funding from the government.
“Not having enough police officers affects all of our living standards and feelings of safety, which cannot be right.
“This is something that I feel strongly about and will continue to represent you in ensuring a fair deal for County Durham and Darlington.”