Guardian news and comment
Firmer approach needed
At a council meeting later in the year, the Police and Crime commissioner (PCC), Marc Jones, will address South Holland District Council (SHDC) councillors. Here is something for him to be thinking about.
There are increasing reports in the media of so-called ‘low level’ crime; these days, it’s described as ‘anti-social behaviour’.
It ranges from littering, damage to public and private property, breaches of the peace, theft of low value items, evidence of drug use and so on. These all need to be addressed.
There are several reasons police give for not attending such incidents - the probability of insufficient evidence, lack of resources, more urgent or serious matters elsewhere and, of course, a lack of resources and funding from central Government.
These are valid, they do make it hard to keep the lid on criminal activity.
The constable on the beat and local management no doubt do their best and must obey instructions from higher up the chain, but the buck stops somewhere.
Where does ultimate responsibility lie? Who’s to blame for the inability to prevent these comparatively small, but to those affected, deeply-disturbing incidents?
Perhaps it’s government, the chief police officers, PCC or a combination of them all.
What I can say is that lack of reaction to minor crimes encourages the culprits to commit larger ones. The idiots who engage in anti-social behaviour have to grasp that they are committing crimes, not just being a bit naughty.
We know that preventative medicine works and saves money long term. So would preventative policing.
I think it’s time there was some more imaginative thinking, at the Home Office and right down the chain.
It’s not all about money, it’s about use of resources, lateral thinking, perhaps better use of volunteers, innovation and less tolerance of individuals who find it amusing to make life hard for the rest of us.
Cllr Paul Foyster,