“Seven years of austerity has seen police numbers cut by “more than 15%”, according to new research from Unison.
There are now 2,817 fewer people employed by the South West’s five forces than there were in 2010.
Devon and Cornwall’s force has been hit worst – losing 22% of its strength.
Unison says the government needs to stop the cuts and get numbers back to a reasonable level.
Its Police and Justice Lead Mike Cracknell said austerity is “hitting public safety”.
“Our police workers are 100% committed to keeping people safe, often putting themselves in danger to do so. But you can’t do the job with a skeleton crew.”
The Home Secretary Amber Rudd says the evidence doesn’t back up claims that reduced resources are the cause of more crime.”