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Labour’s Abdal Ullah will submit this motion, time permitting, to the full meeting of Tower Hamlets council next Wednesday.

Tackling crime in Tower Hamlets

Proposer: Cllr Abdal Ullah

Seconder: Cllr Shiria Khatun

This Council notes:

–       That by the Metropolitan Police’s own figures crime in Tower Hamlets has increased 9% since 2010.

–       Over the same period crime in neighbouring Hackney was down 3% and in Newham down 6%.

–       In 2011/12 there were almost 20,000 reported incidents of anti-social behaviour.

–       Tower Hamlets has the second highest levels of anti-social behaviour in London (p. 149)

–       Figures in the Community Safety Plan, buried on page 130, show that between October 2009 and September 2012 robberies were up 50%, knife crime was up 49%

–       In the 2013 Annual Residents Survey 41% of people said crime was one of their top three concerns, this was the biggest overall concern from residents.

–       The Mayor’s Community Safety Plan makes no reference to the significant increases in crime and ASB nor does it give a true appreciation of the key challenges facing the borough.

–       The Mayor vetoed Labour’s proposal at the 2011 Budget to fund 17 new police officers.

This Council Believes:

–       That the Mayor’s complacent approach to crime has meant the Council has not been focused on tackling what residents see as the most important issue facing our borough.

–       The borough needs a Mayor who will show leadership in facing up to and challenging anti-social behaviour, tasking council officers appropriately and working in partnership with other organisations including the police.

This Council further notes:

–       Neighbourhood policing has been essentially destroyed – many wards now have just one PC and one PCSO.

–       The positive impact of the Safer Neighbourhood Teams which were introduced by the Labour Government and Labour Council in Tower Hamlets. That the SNTs helped to not only reduce crime in Tower Hamlets but also increased public confidence in the police.

–       The changes introduced by Boris Johnson which have cut Safer Neighbourhood Teams to the bone by cutting the teams to one police officer and one police community support officer per ward, down from six officers under Labour.

–       The CSP figures show that incidences of arson in the borough are down 31% since 2009/10.

–       Boris Johnson continues to pursue his plan to close half of the borough’s police stations as well as closing Bow fire station and halving the number of fire engines at Whitechapel.

This Council further believes:

–       The neighbourhood policing model introduced by the last Labour Government and piloted by the Labour council was a strong and successful model for local policing.

–       Under the current Mayor of London neighbourhood policing has been significantly dismantled.

–       The current Mayor of Tower Hamlets has completely failed to protect the community policing model which was so successful after Labour introduced it.

–       Boris Johnson’s cuts to police and fire stations in the borough will have a detrimental effect on community safety.

–       The closure of Bow and cuts at Whitechapel fire station will not only reduce capacity but also put additional pressure on the remaining stations and staff. This will in turn reduce their ability to undertake fire prevention outreach work and could threaten to reverse the positive gains made over previous years.

This Council resolves:

–       To condemn the Mayor of Tower Hamlets for his failure of leadership in tackling crime and anti-social behaviour.

–       To reassert the importance of strong and locally integrated neighbourhood policing team and to support Labour’s approach to reassert a neighbourhood policing model.

–       To reiterate Labour’s call for the Mayor to support and fund new police officers as opposed to additional THEOs.

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