Tory MP Eddie Hughes launches scathing attack on David Jamieson in Parliament, calling on Theresa May for support over police officer numbers

By Peter Madeley | Walsall | Politics | Published:

Eddie Hughes has called for Theresa May's backing in urging the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner to put more officers on the region's streets.

Walsall North MP Eddie Hughes

During Prime Minister's Questions the Tory MP for Walsall North said the he had lobbied the Police Minister for funds to put more bobbies on the beat.

In an attack on the region's PCC David Jamieson, he added: "Will the Prime Minister join me in urging the Labour Police and Crime Commissioner for the West Midlands to put more police on the streets rather than increasing the budget for back office staff by £10 million?"

In response, Mrs May said the Government had been keen to make sure police officers were out on the streets and 'not in back office jobs'.

She added that the force had received an additional £9.5m in funding and that it was 'up to the Labour commissioner' how the money was spent.

Last week the Express & Star revealed that West Midlands Police spending an extra £10 million on office staff while axing 78 frontline officers.

Mr Jamieson, who is raising the police council tax precept by £12-a-year, said the rise in support staff spending was required to cover annual increases in salaries.

Jill Harrison, the Unison Branch Secretary at West Midlands Police, said: "Police staff are specialists in their field and often mean that warranted officers don't need to be in an office.

"To name but a few, they are your investigators, custody, crime analysts, call handlers, dispatchers, cleaners, porters, fleet services, operations planners, IT support, property and evidence, scenes of crime, front office, PSCOs, administration, data forensics, human resources, witness care, CCTV operators and trainers - all vital roles, all very much required, all working directly and indirectly to keep us safe.

"Blame Government budget cuts, not their colleagues for the reduction in police officer numbers."

Peter Madeley

By Peter Madeley

Political Editor for the Express & Star. Responsible for local and national political stories, opinion, comment and analysis.


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