Ian Bond & Gwyneth Deakins

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Defending our Police services – in Woodford, and in London

by gwynethdeakins on 9 October, 2017

Last week local Lib Dems Nat Pabla and Gwyneth Deakins joined GLA Member Caroline Pidgeon in responding to the Mayor of London’s consultation on the future of police bases in the capital.  The Lib Dems are leading the fight to preserve local police services – in Redbridge, in particular, against the proposed closure of Woodford police station.

Caroline issued a statement as below:

Defending our police service across the whole of London 

Last week saw the completion of the Mayor’s consultation on his proposals to close police stations and front counters, wrapped up in the grandly titled Public Access and Engagement Strategy.

While recognising the fact that people are changing how they wish to engage with the police, I have been highly critical of how the consultation has been undertaken, with many of the public meetings being poorly publicised, often leading to low attendance levels.

As background to the proposed changes there are currently big question marks about the police’s ability to respond to emergency calls.  The average time taken to respond to 999 calls has increased fivefold in the past two years and average 101 wait times are currently 500 seconds.

The Mayor is proposing a police station closure plan which will cut the number of police stations in the capital in half, while also slashing Safer Neighbourhood Bases.  This raises huge concerns about how the Met will operate in the years ahead.

Closing police counters, in particular, will not work unless the Met and MOPAC improve their engagement with the public.

Constituents have in the last few weeks also raised some strong concerns about the considerable social and operational disadvantages of selling certain stations in Bexley, Ealing, Southall, Hornsey in Haringey, Woodford in Redbridge, Notting Hill in Kensington, Barking and Dagenham and Wimbledon.   I have also highlighted the oddity of Streatham station being marked for sale, despite it being refurbished as recently as 2015 at a cost of £500,000.

Thank you to everyone who has contacted me in relation to these proposed changes.

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