Labour admits they can't confirm their own figures on police cuts

At the monthly meeting of Greenwich Council, the Labour Cabinet Member for Community Safety & Environment refused to confirm figures for the number of police officers in the borough which had been used in her own party’s leaflets.

At the Council meeting Conservative Council Group Leader Cllr Spencer Drury asked the Cabinet Member to provide figures for the change in the number of regular (warranted) police officers in the borough since March 2008.  In response, the Labour Cabinet Member could only say:

“I thank Councillor Drury for his question and I will provide the information when I have been able to retrieve it.”

This lack of information contrasted painfully with the clarity portrayed in Labour’s leaflets distributed to select areas across the borough where it is claimed “the Tory Mayor is carrying on with his plans to cut 1,800 officers from our streets.”  The leaflet continues to claim that Boris Johnson is being hypocritical, however, this is charge which the Greenwich Labour Party appear to be vulnerable to, as local Conservatives did manage to find the figures for the changes to police number since March 2008 (when Boris was first elected).  In fact from March 2008 to February 2011, the number of regular police officers in Greenwich rose by 43 and the number of special constables by 69.  Indeed even the Labour pan-London figure appears to be completely inaccurate with an increase of 1,000 police officers in May 2012 when compared to May 2008 rather than the cut Labour suggests.

Leader of Greenwich Conservatives Cllr Spencer Drury commented “Labour’s inability to supply even basic figures on police number in Greenwich while making claims of cuts in their leaflets is a disgrace.  The people of Greenwich deserve better than the Labour Party trying to mislead them with fantastic claims and unsubstantiated figures.”

“I call upon the Labour Party to apologise for misleading residents and to publish the correct figures once the Cabinet Member has managed to find them."

The text of the Labour leaflet is shown below: