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High rate of violence ‘undoubtedly’ linked with lower police numbers, new report reveals

THERE is “undoubtedly a relationship” between lower numbers of police and the high rate of serious and fatal violence, according to a damning report published today.

And the annual State of Policing report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services revealed that thousands of emergency calls had been held in queues as there were not enough officers to respond to them.

HM chief inspector of constabulary Sir Tom Winsor, who wrote the report, said: “Many of the points in this report are issues we have raised before, and often.

“These issues are becoming more and more urgent.

“The principal of these is the failure to plan properly, compromising public safety and relying on frontline officers desire to ‘get the job done’.”

Mr Winsor said there were “no excuses for the shortcomings I routinely see” and that these “would not be acceptable in many other organisations.”

Labour’s shadow policing minister Louise Haigh said: “With surging violent crime, the independent inspector is sounding the alarm by warning that some forces are so stretched that the lives of vulnerable people are being put at risk.

“The police have reached a tipping point where responding to surging levels of violent crime, after eight years of brutal cuts, is becoming almost unmanageable.

“It’s time the Tories finally owned up to the public by admitting that their cuts have left our police at breaking point and put our communities at risk.”

Ms Haigh also pointed to last year’s report, which warned that vulnerable people were at risk of harm while waiting for help from overstretched police forces.

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