Sadiq Khan pledges second police officer in every Havering ward

PUBLISHED: 14:20 21 July 2016 | UPDATED: 15:18 21 July 2016

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan pledges more neighbourhood officers. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Images

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan pledges more neighbourhood officers. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Images

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Every council ward in Havering will get a second neighbourhood police officer patrolling the streets, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan pledged today.

A second officer, and a police community support officer, will be working in the borough’s 18 ward by the end of next year.

Around 100 council wards across London currently have two dedicated officers, and this will be extended across all of London’s 629 wards.

City Hall said that the officers will be taken from existing roles, and would be “ring-fenced” from being called away on other duties.

Announcing his plan today, the Mayor of London said this would ensure police officers were “the eyes and ears” of each ward.

He said: “As mayor, the safety and security of all Londoners is my first priority and this starts with real neighbourhood policing.

“Today, I am very pleased to be able to announce the first significant step towards this, with a second dedicated PC in every London ward.

“Our local officers should be known both to the community and by the community.

“They are essential to improving trust and confidence in our police and keeping our communities safe.”

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the Metropolitan police commissioner, said he was delighted by the announcement, which would improve neighbourhood policing.

But Havering’s London Assembly Member, Keith Prince said he questioned whether this would limit the Met’s flexibility.

He said: “On the face of it, the provision of an extra officer in each London borough would be welcomed – however the lack of flexibility this affords the Met poses a serious risk to the capital.

“The mayor has not explained where these redeployed officers – who are already performing duties elsewhere – will come from and what the Met will be sacrificing as a result.

“If, as he says, the officers cannot be moved, how will the Met plan additional policing for events like major protests or festivals?

“Wards with the highest crime rates already have two officers assigned to them – this new policy treats every area of London as the same.

“The mayor needs to be clearer about how the Met is supposed to adapt to this new system and perhaps think more about the possible consequences.”

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