SADDLEWORTH’S MP has intervened during a House of Commons debate to connect the recent spate of burglaries in the area to the reduction of 2,000 police front line posts.
Debbie Abrahams, MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth, intervened during the Police Grant Report to highlight the recent issues across the villages within her constituency.
There have been 12 burglaries in the last ten days across Greenfield and Uppermill, with thieves smashing shop fronts, ripping out alarms and stealing tills, stock and charities boxes.
Mrs Abrahams said: “We cannot possibly say there is no link between such events and the front-line cuts to staff in the Greater Manchester Police.”
And she asked Government Minister Mike Penning MP: “What can the Minister say to my many constituents who have contacted me to say they are very concerned about their safety? Surely this must be a priority for him.”
Mrs Abrahams has helped to organise a meeting with community PCSOs, businesses and residents to discuss who may be responsible as well as prevent further burglaries.
The meeting will be held at 11.30am-12.30pm on Saturday, February 27 at the Civic Hall in Uppermill and all are welcome to attend.
Mrs Abrahams added: “I’ll also be visiting businesses who have been affected and I will continue to raise constituents’ concerns with GMP in my regular meetings with them.
“It is important the local community feel safe and that effective action is taken by our local police service to reduce crime.
“They have informed me that an operation in response to the increase in burglaries was put in to place in early January.
“GMP also tells me they have been working with partners and businesses to increase awareness and tackle the problem to ensure the safety of constituents.
“I’m assured by GMP that PCSOs have been visiting premises to offer advice on crime prevention and are assisting in the introduction of a business watch scheme.”
Referring to the debate in Parliament Mrs Abrahams said: “The first duty of any Government is the safety and security of our citizens.
“The Police Grant Settlement gives police funding figures for the next financial year (2016/17) and confirms forces are going to endure further real-term cuts in funding.
“The UK has seen the sharpest decline in police numbers anywhere in the EU.
“The Government has broken their promise to the public to protect frontline officer numbers and cut funding to the police service by £2.3bn, 25 per cent in real terms, in the last Parliament.
“In the last six months alone, a further 1,300 police officers have been lost. That’s the equivalent of a whole force.”
If you witness a burglary in progress or any suspicious criminal activity put your safety first and ensure you contact the police immediately. You can call 101 in a non-emergency and 999 in case of an emergency.