Improvements to the police service

I welcome the Government’s announcement that a single, non-emergency 101 number has been rolled out to police forces across England and Wales to make it easier for people to contact the police when they need them. Only 25 per cent of 999 calls to the police require an emergency response, so having a clear alternative for non-emergencies will ease pressure on 999 services. With a fixed tariff of 15p per call from both mobile phones and landlines, no matter how long the call or what time of day, this will spare the public the cost of dialling the 0845 numbers previously used by many forces which can cost up to 40p per minute. In addition, there have been improvements to the website which now provides a much more accurate picture of the crime and anti-social behaviour is happening on our doorstep. The website now includes incidents of crime and antisocial behaviour recorded at all train stations and railway networks. Soon incidents occurring at or near significant local sites like shopping areas, nightclubs, parks, airports, car parks and hospitals will be added too. From May this year will show the action taken by the police or the justice outcome after a crime. In introducing street level crime mapping, the new 101 number and the election of Police and Crime Commissioners, I believe it is clear that the Government is listening to the public’s demand for even more information, transparency and communication with the police, and I am confident that these measures will play a significant part in bringing down the level of crime in our area.