Can anyone make sense of remarks below?

“Devon and Cornwall police officer numbers have dropped below 3,000, according to new figures released in an apparent attempt by the Government to bury bad news.

The number of sworn officers at the force has reduced by 46 over the 12 months to March 31 and now stands at 2,914, a report published on Thursday shows. …

The former Devon and Cornwall police and crime commissioner, Tony Hogg, fought to keep officer numbers above the 3,000 figure for most of his four-year term.

His successor in the elected “crime czar” role, Alison Hernandez, unveiled a £24m plan to add 100 officers to the workforce in January by cutting around half of the police and community support officers (PCSO).

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) report published on July 20 also shows that PCSO numbers have dropped 10 per cent in the two counties, from 347 to 311 in the year to March 31.

Staff numbers also plunged by 12 per cent over the year, from 1,488 to 1,306, a reduction of 182, the report shows. …

The leader of Labour’s county group of seven, Rob Hannaford, blamed the commissioner for the move to halve PCSO numbers, saying the PCC role was an “American gimmick” and “not the way forward”.

“PCSOs often fill gaps and there is concern that huge reductions will only diminish all the good work that has been done,” he told the meetign at County Hall. …

Roger Croad, chairman of the police and crime panel which oversees the PCC, insisted that decisions to re-shape the force were the “sole province” of the chief constable, Shaun Sawyer, and not decided by Ms Hernandez.

Mr Croad said in his opinion a sworn officer was “worth his weight in gold”, adding that chief cos Sawyer had made it clear that cutting PCSOs for officers was “his decision alone”.

“I am not her (sic) as an apologist for the chief constable or the commissioner,” he added.

“Most police forces have reduced PCSO numbers over five years whereas Devon and Cornwall have not. The chief constable has decided that the time is right; also there is a national requirement to uplift armed capacity to deal with the terrorist threat.

“As of June 1 there are 310 PCSOs which the chief constable wants to reduce to 150 by 2021, enabling 100 new officers.

“Several PCSOs have made the transition; there are no plans for any redundancies. The chief constable said he wants the right people with the right skills in the right place doing the right things.”

2 thoughts on “

  1. If it was the Chief Constable’s decision, why did the P&CC make the announcement and claim it was her’s?

    And adding 100 officers to the 2914 would only take them back just above 3,000 so the 100 officer Alison Hernandez’s boasted about were not in-fact an increase in numbers, just replacing empty positions which had not yet been refilled.


  2. The idea of a Police and Crime Commissioner was a stupid and money wasting exercise from day one.
    Get rid of that useless waste of space Hernandez and there will be money for more officers on our streets( hopefully!)
    What does the chief constable do these days?
    Traditionally he was the PR rep for the police …
    Perhaps we don’t need him either.
    Even more cash for officers!


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