Havering Council to invest £300k a year to pay for five police officers as part of partnership scheme
PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:06 09 May 2019
Police officers will be employed by the council in a bid to fight against crime in the borough.
The Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (Mopac) Partnership Plus Scheme, which will see Havering Council invest around £300,000 a year in policing for the next three years to fund five new posts, was given the green light at a cabinet meeting at Havering Town Hall in Romford on Wednesday, May 9.
The new officers will be ring-fenced from Metropolitan Police duties such as policing football matches and events in order to make sure they can focus on policing issues that affect communities in the borough but they may still be used by the Met police when needed for public order issues or in emergencies.
The council is able to pay for more policing under the new scheme which was introduced by the Met in February 2019.
Havering has now joined the scheme alongside other London local authorities where there are 338 officers employed by councils.
Just seven local authorities have not invested in the scheme.
Leader of Havering Council, Councillor Damian White, said: "It is definitely one of the most innovative schemes from the council to employ police officers in the borough to tackle the rate of crime.
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"Having extra police on the streets can only be a good thing, as it will give us extra resources to tackle on anti-social behaviour and further enforce the law.
"It will allow us to prioritise and allocate resources to tackle the issues that need an immediate response and to take the most appropriate action to clamp down on crime in our community."
But not everyone was so positive.
Romford Labour were quick to point out that neighbouring Newham Council, run by Labour, has been funding its own police officers for more than a decade.
They said: "Currently Newham have an extra 40 officers, only paying for 20 as they acted early to take advantage of an incentive which is no longer available.
"A decade behind, 35 extra officers less and the cost per police officer twice as much. Another sign that Conservative councils provide less and cost more."
A decision about the ranks of officers to be employed by the council is still to be decided but it is recommended in the report that four police constables and one sergeant are employed.
A start date will be decided upon in due course.