Created: 10 July 2017
Andrew joined local MPs in a meeting with Chief Superintendent Christine Wilson of Humberside Police last week at Scunthorpe Police Station to discuss local policing matters. Andrew raised two main issues, the provision of policing resources in our rural areas, especially the Isle given recent concerns, and how we are dealing with community impact issues when illegal traveller sites appear.
Commenting on the meeting, Andrew said, "On the first issues, it was reassuring to hear that the force is now committed to returning incident response police to stations such as Epworth and Brigg. I was hugely sceptical of the previous Chief Constable's restructuring of the service which took these units away from stations such as those.
"I'd discussed this previously with the Police and Crime Commissioner and we were of the same view that this has to change. I am pleased to say that the new Chief Constable is also of the view that the force needs to recommit these sorts of resources over a bigger geographical area. The force is now recruiting more police officers, and PCSO numbers have also gone up year on year.
"What this means is that we should start to see more dedicated police resources in the Isle as this recruitment and restructure takes place. That will still take some time so I've asked for an assurance that more will be done in the short term. Apparently, traffic units have been tasked with undertaking more general patrols on the Isle and I've offered to work with the Council to look at whether the Police would benefit from more number plate recognition cameras at locations as cars enter the Isle.
"On the second issue, the Police are looking at how they respond to illegal encampments and the incidents and issues that occur as a result. Residents told me they didn't feel assured there were enough police around when we had the recent issue in Goole. I've also been chasing the Town Council but they have decided not to spend any more money securing sites around the town. I don't agree with this decision but it is only fair to say that their explanation was that they felt the works would be costly and would likely be damaged by or ineffective against determined individuals wanting to gain access. Residents will have to judge for themselves whether they think that is right or not."