Police funding cuts are high on MPs’ agenda

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Doncaster’s MPs will be briefed by the county’s Chief Constable tomorrow on the way funding cuts are affecting his force.

Med Hughes is travelling to London to meet politicians and discuss his fears that Government funding cuts will lead to an increase in crime.

Tomorrow’s meeting comes days after South Yorkshire’s Police Federation, which represents rank-and-file officers, claimed the Government’s plans to cut police budgets by 20 per cent would pose a ‘significant risk to public service and law and order’.

South Yorkshire Police need to save £41m over the next four years and, in an open letter to all MPs, the Police Federation claimed the Government risks turning the police service into ‘a dilapidated, demoralised fragment of its former self’.

The meeting between the police chief and MPs also comes days after a think tank published a report into the cost of policing, which claims one in 20 police officers across the country are carrying out roles that could be fulfilled by civilians.

The Policy Exchange think tank claims there are too many officers working in back office jobs - and more than 14,500 failed to make any arrests at all last year.

But South Yorkshire Police have among the lowest number of officers in back office roles compared to other forces across the country, with 16 employed in the control room in 2009 and 13 in criminal justice posts last year.