I am the Lib Dem leader of the Opposition on Gateshead council (and a councillor since 1987).
The office of PCC has proved expensive, ineffective, and unnecessary. I support its abolition and returning police oversight to a board of councillor and community representatives.
Under the previous PCC, police numbers have fallen, crime rates have risen, and the police precept payable by council taxpayers has increased by the maximum – 21% last year – with no noticeable improvement in outcomes or police cover.
My priorities are:
- Neighbourhood policing
- Tackling the anti social behaviour affecting many communities.
- Reducing violence against and exploitation of women and children
- Tackling extremism and hate crime.
- Identifying joint solutions with mental health and social care providers to reduce pressure on police resources
- Reviewing the Late Night Levy and ensuring greater transparency on how it is spent.
- Supporting victims and encouraging restorative justice.
- Better resourcing for rural areas, including reopening police cells in Northumberland. Police cover is being depleted as officers from rural areas need to take detainees to Wallsend, since cells in the county were closed.
- Accessible justice via local courts
- Reducing reoffending rates
- Joined up working between police and local authority community safety provision, probation services, and youth offending teams.
- Emulating the approach taken by Durham Police on drugs policing. Drug use should be a public health priority rather than a police priority and police resources targeted at dealers not users.
- Effective action against prolific offenders and organised crime.
- Retention of the European Arrest Warrant and effective participation in European-wide initiatives on crime, terrorism, and extremism.
A vote for me at this election is a vote for common sense and effective community policing.
Prepared by Greg Stone, Election Agent (Liberal Democrats) at 38 Faldonside, Heaton NE6 5UH
7 Laburnum Grove, Sunniside, NE16 5LY · 07860 730270