Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tories Lash out over Policing

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tories Lash out over Policing

Article excerpt

Byline: By John Deane

Government blamed for not tackling crime

A new report criticising the police for spending too much time behind their desks was seized upon by the Tories yesterday.

They said the report, by the right-wing think tank Civitas, was evidence of the Government's failure to get to grips with crime.

Civitas said the fact that police spent too much time in the office and not enough on the streets meant Britain was a "seriously crime-afflicted and disintegrating society".

Crime was now "a very low-risk activity for the criminal".

Shadow home secretary David Davis yesterday said: "The findings of this report are a direct consequence of this Government's failed crime policy.

"Police spend more time behind their desks, because this Government has tied them up in more red tape than ever.

"Only the Conservatives would put 40,000 extra police officers on our streets ( free from the burden of bureaucracy and political correctness ( to actually fight crime.

"The Government should abandon its complacent response to crime, recognise this is a serious failure and urgently get a grip."

The Civitas report, Cultures and Crimes: Policing in Four Nations, compared policing in Britain, France, Germany and the USA. It argued that all four countries had witnessed steep rises in crime and anti-social behaviour after the cultural revolution of the 1960s, which, it said, "broke down shared norms of acceptable behaviour".

However, the report argued, the USA, France and Germany had made a more effective job of combating rising crime.

This was because British police had failed to focus on crime prevention and zero tolerance of low-level disorder and anti-social behaviour.

The report said burglaries had increased more than fivefold from 72,000 in 1964 to 402,000 last year.

And there were now 33 robberies of personal property for every one 40 years ago. …

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