Candidate to fight for frontline police

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A CANDIDATE for the role of Police and Crime Commissioner in Lincolnshire has called the elections “ a daft idea” but vowed to do his best to protect frontline policing.

Phil Dilks, a Deeping St James councillor and former member of Lincolnshire Police Authority, was named as Labour’s candidate on Monday.

He welcomed the chance to stand, but slammed the Government for spending £100million on electing the commissioners at a time when it is looking at cutting 16,000 police officers from England’s streets.

Mr Dilks said he put his name forward because he was not prepared to stand aside and leave it to a Tory commissioner “who would simply be a cheer leader for Government cuts”.

He said: “I don’t think it’s a good time for these elections to happen. It seems to me that the £100million could be better spent on frontline policing.

“In Lincolnshire the cuts equate to 140 officers, which is well over 10 per cent of our numbers and in Lincolnshire we are a small force covering a huge area and the impact of such cuts will be huge.

“I don’t believe they can cut police numbers in the way they are doing – you don’t cut crime by cutting frontline police.

“I want to make sure Lincolnshire stays one of the safest counties in the country in policing terms.”

Mr Dilks is now waiting to discover who will stand against him in the Police and Crime Commissioner election, which will be held on November 15.

He will also start planning his campaign encouraging residents to vote for him.

He said: “What I will stand for and what I would like to see in a commissioner is that it would be a listening role – listening to the concerns of the people of Lincolnshire about policing and trying to respond to their wants and needs.

“I have lived in south Lincolnshire for most of my life and I often think it is the forgotten corner of the county.

“Often when these roles come up they are filled by someone from Lincoln, so I want to fly the flag for south Lincolnshire.”