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Government ‘passing the buck’ over police funding cuts, says Hackney Council crime chief

PUBLISHED: 11:27 21 December 2017 | UPDATED: 12:08 22 December 2017

Cllr Caroline Selman on The Narroway Hackney Central

Cllr Caroline Selman on The Narroway Hackney Central

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The town hall’s crime chief has slammed the government for “passing the buck” for huge police funding cuts onto taxpayers.

Cllr Caroline Selman’s comments come in the wake of an announcement by the home office that councils will be given the power to raise the portion of council tax which funds policing by £12 a year per household.

Hackney last month launched Foot the Bill, a campaign urging ministers to reverse devastating cuts to the Met Police and give officers the funding they need to do their jobs properly.

On Tuesday Whitehall revealed plans giving councils across the country the chance to raise council tax, potentially bringing in £270million for police forces. On top of that central government would stump up £130m for national issues.

But the announcement also confirmed the police grant would not increase, as many had called for.

Cllr Caroline Selman said: “Tuesday’s Government announcement on police funding will not address the loss of one in four officers in Hackney since 2010.

“The government failed to contribute a single penny more to the Met’s police grant, and they have warned that by 2020/21 they will have been forced to make £1bn in savings, despite rising crime across London.

“Far from footing the bill, the government is passing the buck onto taxpayers to make up for their short-sighted and counter-productive cuts to the police, and even this will be a fraction of what the Met has lost since 2010.

“As part of our campaign, we’re asking residents to write to the home secretary to urge her to abandon cuts to the police, which will also count as a response to the home office’s consultation on police funding.”

To write to the home secretary, visit hackney.gov.uk/foot-the-bill. The deadline is January 16.

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