This site is easier to read in landscape format on mobiles.

Local Greens condemn Lancashire Constabulary proposal to sack PCSOs

John Freeman
Local Green Party councillors are urging the Lancashire Police Authority not to dismiss all of Lancashire's Police Community Support Officers to make savings cuts.

As we reported last week, the county's 427 PCSOs have been handed redundancy notices that could lead to them all being dismissed in March 2011. Even Conservative Morecambe and Lunesdale MP David Morris seems clearly alarmed by this, calling for alternatives.

The Lancaster and Morecambe district has about 40 PCSOs, of whom 10 are part funded via the Lancaster District Community Safety Partnership.

"PCSOs are a vital part of the community's fight against crime and anti-social behaviour in our wards," argues Castle Ward councillor Jon Barry. "Anti-social behaviour has reduced massively since PCSOs were introduced.

"Before this, it was left to ward councillors and overworked police officers to try to sort things out - but this was rarely successful. I could perhaps understand reducing PCSO numbers but not eliminating them altogether. I urge the police authority not to take this action."

Bulk Ward councillor John Whitelegg added: "If the Police Authority goes through with its threat, I would be strongly in favour of switching the hundreds of thousands of pounds that the City Council spends on CCTV to keeping PCSOs as a visible presence on our streets."