Today, Daniel Zeichner, Member of Parliament for Cambridge, called on the Home Secretary to explain the dramatic fall in the number of Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) who play a vital role in tackling anti-social behaviour in Cambridge.


In October 2020, Cambridgeshire police announced plans to cut PSCOs numbers by half. Chief Constable Nick Dean said the decision was to save money and that Cambridgeshire police “could not continue with the existing neighbourhood policing model with the budget constraints we currently face, and are likely to have in the coming years”.


PCSOs are down by over 7,000 since 2010. And charge rates are currently at record lows while the number of cases where no suspect was identified has rocketed.


Under the Conservative Government, police officer numbers fell by 21,000. But, while numbers have improved, they are still below 2010, and out of the first tranche of 6,000 new officers, only 400 new recruits were deployed into ‘neighbourhood’ roles – serving the communities they are required to protect.


Daniel Zeichner said, “PCSOs are the eyes and ears of their communities, responding to the crimes that still blight neighbourhoods up and down the country, including the 1.7 million cases of anti-social behaviour reported to the police in 2021. In Cambridge, more and more people are coming to me with reports of anti-social behaviour in their communities. It is time the Government took this issue seriously and provided proper support for community policing and PCSOs”.

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