Denise Burke, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for North Norfolk writes:
Norfolk Police is a small force compared to other forces with fewer opportunities to find economies of scale from which larger forces can benefit. Yet Norfolk is a vast diverse county with coastal towns, a vibrant city and rural communities.
The force announced in July last year that it needed to make savings of £21.4m by March 2015 in light of Government funding cuts.
This week’s announcement that Norfolk Police will need to axe 350 jobs will have a significant impact on policing in the county and especially in rural areas such as North Norfolk.
It is doubtful that resources will be cut in those areas where there is a denser population and higher crime rates such as Norwich, Kings Lynn and Kings Lynn.
Many areas in North Norfolk rely on police community support offers but 120 PCSOs are being cut.
Frontline policing in North Norfolk must not be sacrificed to plug gaps in policing in the larger towns.
Residents in North Norfolk must continue to feel safe. For many elderly residents the fear of crime is very real and more police visibility is needed not less.