I’ve been honoured to serve as your Independent Police and Crime Commissioner since 2012. I have kept my word, delivered everything I promised and kept party politics out of local policing. I hope you will let me continue.
Austerity saw a reduction of 249 police officers in Gloucestershire and a cut of £32 million to their annual budget. Those were tough times but step by step we’re growing again, however government policy has seen taxation shift from central government to your council tax.
When I took office Gloucestershire had the 14th lowest crime rate in England and Wales, now it’s the 5th lowest and though crime has begun to rise, Gloucestershire has seen the second lowest increase. (ONS data). We should be proud of this. Gloucestershire is a good place to live, work and bring up a family.
I have a good relationship with the voluntary sector to whom I kept my promise to put them on the top table with local councils and others.
My challenge to the Gloucestershire Constabulary is to demonstrate to you that ‘every crime matters’. Why? Because ‘every victim matters’.
When I set burglary as a priority the police knew exactly what to do, the same for rural organised crime.
But we can do better! The challenge of ‘Every crime matters’ is far tougher. Success will take absolute commitment, experience and skill. Not because the resources that go into a murder will be the same as a shoplifter, but because if you ignore minor crimes the rot sets in and our quality of life deteriorates.
I’ll work for you and with you, for the whole County; be it rural or urban. I’ll work with all parties but I can only do this because I’m elected and Independent.
Prepared by: Martin Surl, Higher Ground, Birdlip, Gloucester.
Martin John Surl
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