I spoke in the recent Commons debate on Anti-Social Behaviour to commend the Welsh Government’s support for PCSOs (Police Community Support Officers).
Speaking in the debate led by my fellow Labour MP Diana Johnson, I said “Members have spoken about the important role of PCSOs, and highlighted how they have been cut in England. It’s important to note that the Welsh Government has stepped in to fund PCSOs across Wales after the UK Government cut funding. Isn’t this a stark reminder of the difference between Labour and Tory Government policies on policing?”
PCSOs are a vital resource in the battle to tackle anti-social behaviour in our communities, but since 2010 6,000 community support officers have been axed by the UK Government – despite promises to protect the policing frontline. Gwent would have only been left with around 30 PCSOs, but the Welsh Labour Government – which has no responsibility for policing – stepped up to the table and funded 101 PCSOs for Gwent. This was a hugely welcome intervention but should not hide the wider problem of inadequate funding for policing, which is in the hands of the Home Office.