Essex Police need to make £63 million of cuts imposed by the Tory Government and as predicted the axe is going to be falling in Pitsea with the closure of the local police station; which will no longer be used for either front-counter or backroom staff operations. Pitsea police station however is part of the community and residents do not want it to disappear. Police stations are however a symbol of the law, a very real permanent reminder of the rules that govern our country. Officers on the beat are a transient presence whilst police stations are constant. Police stations themselves are not impractical. They help in giving the sense of security that residents so need.
The current plan is to have a number of centralised police stations with front-counter services. The majority of crimes will be reported either by telephone or a new online service which is yet to become operational in Essex. What is not considered however is that people who are the victims of crime often are placed in distressing and frustrating situations through no fault of their own. These people need human contact. They need to see and speak to an understanding officer. They need to feel as though something is being done. They need their local police station. What they do not need is to call up an automated system which they will be charged for, where a message is played whilst waiting for an operator who could be based hundreds of miles away to take their phone call.
With our street lights currently turn out from 1am to 5am each evening and the clear rise in local crime, these cuts cannot, and will not, lead to making Essex a safer place to live. Plans are also afoot to significantly reduce Basildon’s PCSO team further reducing policing locally. Your local Labour team will continue to fight these cuts at all levels.