The suggestion that thousands of police jobs will be cut in London has been rubbished by the capital’s deputy mayor for policing – although the Metropolitan Police Service has confirmed it will be reducing officer numbers.
A recent report from Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) stated that the headcount at the Met would be slashed by 3,200 over the next four years. This total would include the loss of 1,907 police officers, 920 community support officers and 374 police staff.
But Kit Malthouse, deputy to mayor of London Boris Johnson, called the figures “cobblers.”
The statistics were “based on numbers from some time ago,” he said in a BBC interview. “These figures are forecasts and therefore changeable.
“The mayor tasked me with maintaining police numbers at about where we are – about 32,500,” he continued.
“That is what we need through the [Olympic] Games and what he thinks we need for the future. He has in the past shown himself willing to put more money in to maintain those numbers and we are talking to the government about what they can do to help us too, and working on our savings.”
But the Met confirmed to PM that it was still moving forwards on the “planning assumption” of reducing the number of warranted officers from 33,367 to 31,460 – the number referred to in the HMIC report.
This forecast was subject to change, said the spokesperson, who added: “We must reduce spending by around Ã‚Â£600 million by 2014/15, and we are working to reduce the costs of inanimate resources such as vehicles and buildings. In addition, we are continually reviewing how to deploy our officers to provide the best possible service to Londoners.”