Labour will step up where the Tories have failed by prioritising our community’s safety
The Labour Party are campaigning in Luton for safer communities, with pledges to confront anti-social behaviour and end the violence against women and girls.
Crime and disorder have risen under the Conservative Party. The latest national research shows that police in England and Wales are faced with a £1.6 billion shortfall in funding, and between 2010 and 2020, we have lost thousands of officers from the frontline.
Bedfordshire Police does everything in its power to protect our community, but funding restrictions have made it increasingly harder. We know that community policing is essential to creating a safe environment, it builds local relationships and can make early interventions. Over the past decade, underfunding has impacted the visibility of police on our streets.
As well as reducing our ability to tackle crime, the Conservative Party has cut 73% of funding for youth services since 2010. The impact of youth services on preventing crime must not be underestimated. These services support young people in vulnerable social situations and give them the opportunity to fulfil their potential.
It does not have to be like this. Labour’s plan is different and prioritises making our streets safe.
First, we would redirect over £280 million that has been earmarked for the Prime Minister’s new government yacht and spend it in areas like Luton to tackle anti-social behaviour. The additional funding could be used for surge funding for police officers and PCSOs, for helping councils fund enforcement, or for additional CCTV.
Second, we would strengthen legal protections for victims of anti-social behaviour to give victims of persistent, unresolved anti-social behaviour the same rights that the Labour Party is proposing to enshrine for victims of crime.
Third, we would work to end violence against women and girls by increasing sentences for rape and stalking, reviewing sentencing for all domestic abuse, and improving support for victims of rape and sexual violence. We would deliver where the Conservatives have failed to step up.
Additionally, we would increase the number of police in our community and the provision of youth clubs and treatment services.
If you can’t make the campaign sessions, the Labour Party still want to hear from you about safety in Luton, your priorities and how you think they should be tackled. You can fill out our survey here – https://labour.org.uk/crimesurvey.