Vow to keep cops on beat

Richard Debicki

Richard Debicki

0
Have your say

BLACKPOOL’S police chief has vowed to do all he can to keep officers on the front line following news that Lancashire Constabulary has to save £41m.

BLACKPOOL’S police chief has vowed to do all he can to keep officers on the front line following news that Lancashire Constabulary has to save £41m.

While officer numbers are set to fall – by 550 in total across Lancashire – Chief Supt Richard Debicki said he wants to keep as many officers in Western Division as possible.

Chief Supt Debicki said: “The savings have allowed us to have a long hard look right across the board at our staffing levels.

“As far as possible, we’ll ensure the cuts come from backroom staff and not the front line positions.

“It’s the Constabulary’s job and my job to work hard on behalf of the people in the area. They trust us to do our very best and that is what we will do.

“We’re working incredibly hard to see how we can make those changes with the most minimal impact on the front line.”

But Mr Debicki said cuts were unavoidable.

He added: “We are not immune to the cuts. We do recognise with cuts of this magnitude we will have to look at front life staff as well.

“The absolute detail will not be known for the next few months.

“However, it may be that in some areas we can actually grow our service.

“It’s only right and proper that we are resourced up to the appropriate levels in all areas of business and our neighbourhood policing teams are the real jewel in the crown for us.

“It’s an area of business we want to protect.

“People tell us they really value their community beat managers, police community support officers and supervisors as well.”

However, the position of police community support officers is more precarious; funding comes from central government along with funding from local authorities and other agencies.

Mr Debicki added: “We’ve been seeking to retain as many as possible but there’s likely to be a small reduction.”