(`County Lines`) crime remains a national and a local problem and while violence – and domestic violence – is still at levels that none of us would wish, our streets are safer and more is done, particularly through community partnerships, to prevent young people from becoming involved in crime.
We have to maintain this momentum. Our policemen and women need the best training, the best and most modern equipment and sufficient numbers to carry out the task that we have charged then with.
Our Kent Police and Crime Commissioner, Matthew Scott, has successfully funded the recruitment and training of new young police officers who are now working in Thanet and Canterbury .It takes time, of course, to develop the experience and street wisdom that is needed by good crime-fighters but it is happening now and more will follow this year and the next.
Having held a warrant as a Special Constable myself I am particularly aware of the need to maintain morale and to defend those who we ask to defend us. Through a strong economy we can and must do better still and I am pleased that the Prime Minister has personally committed the necessary resources to produce not just `coppers on the beat` but those with all of the other and necessary skills that are needed to make up a good, happy and effective police force.
In company with other austerity measures needed to balance the books and get spending back under control the police service has faced reductions in funding and manpower and that has been painful for some of our bravest and most dedicated public servants – the men and women that we charge with the duty of maintaining law and keeping us safe.
Our police officers have responded magnificently in difficult circumstances. They have adapted, modernised and are delivering more with less. As a result, many crime rates in Thanet and Herne Bay have fallen very significantly. While drug addiction and related