Kate Osborne hits out at the Government over lack of funding to tackle anti-social behaviour in Jarrow
During Home Office questions on Monday, March 20, Kate Osborne MP asked the Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, when she will allow Northumbria Police to fill its vacant policing posts as a way of tackling anti-social behaviour.
The Jarrow MP asked the question after large numbers of constituents had contact her regarding an increase in anti-social behaviour and shoplifting around Sainsbury’s in East Boldon, as well as anti-social behaviour in Hebburn town centre.
Constituents have also raised concerns over the issue of off-road motorbikes, leading to the Member of Parliament taking action in reporting incidents to the police and is also urging members of the public to do the same.
In the House of Commons, Kate asked: “Government austerity measures led to Northumbria Police losing more than 1,100 police officers and a huge increase in anti social behaviour in my constituency with thefts in local shops in East Boldon and Hebburn and off road motorbikes in Wardley and Boldon.
“The incident levels are so high that this week, I have a specific surgery with the Police and Crime Commissioner in Wardley.
“When will the minister allow recruitment to vacant policing posts, invest in our communities and tackle anti-social behaviour?”
The Home Secretary responded: “The Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner has received just under £3.9million from the Government, through ‘Safer Streets’ to date.
"That has included £3.5million in the current round of funded projects such as community engagement, targeting, hardening and guardianship interventions.
"Those are measures in which Government funding is targeted in local communities in response to local leaders, which is making a difference to safety in our communities.”
Following the session in the House of Commons, the Jarrow MP has hit out at the Home Secretary over her lack of commitment to allowing police forces to recruit new officers.
She commented: “Today (March 20) at Home Office questions I asked the Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, to commit to letting Northumbria Police recruit to their vacant police office posts and invest in tackling anti-social behaviour.
“Disgracefully the Home Secretary didn't answer, instead she side stepped the question.
“It is quite clear from the lack of her response today she has no plans to fill vacancies created as a direct result of this Government's cuts to policing.
“Anti-social behaviour has been on the rise around the constituency, due to a 13 year decrease to police funding, a lack of funding going into youth provision and community hubs has compounded the issue further.
“My constituents regularly report they are unable to use open spaces safely. More needs to be done to ensure that this issue is tackled.
“Incident levels are high so I have organised a joint advice surgery with Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Kim McGuinness so we can jointly support constituents.
“My constituents deserve better, our community deserves better, and the country deserves better. We need a Government with real plans to tackle anti-social behaviour and improve our communities.”