Greenwich Labour spin crime statistics


While we are all familiar with the Labour Party choosing to manipulate the facts for its own ends at national level, the Council meeting on Wednesday night witnessed the Labour executive of Greenwich Council trying the same trick with crime figures. At the meeting, the Council was presented with the Drugs, Crime and Disorder Strategy for 2005 to 2008. 

 

This document claimed that burglaries in the borough had fallen and street crime was lowest in Greenwich compared to similar boroughs.  It also contained the statement that “As the crime audit shows there is much to celebrate in Greenwich”. 

Unfortunately, the Labour Council’s figures are quite incorrect and in reality, since 2001:

  • The level of burglaries has risen from 8.08 to 9.24 per 1,000 residents.  This is a 14% rise at a time when boroughs like Lambeth are seeing substantial falls;
  • Street Crime rose from 4.1 to 5.87 per 1,000 residents, a rise of 43%.  Again boroughs like Hackney and Lambeth have seen substantial falls.

Deputy Leader of the Conservative Group and Parliamentary Candidate for Eltham, Cllr Spencer Drury said, “The Council’s incorrect use of figures is not only misleading but the strategy is flawed because it is based on crime going down over the last three years which is completely wrong.”

Cllr Drury also pointed out that the provision of Safer Neighbourhood Teams must occur through new police being bought into the borough. In Eltham, they had been created from existing officers.  This meant the area outside Middle Park & Sutcliffe ward had only 9 officers instead of 12 and they were much more likely to be sent to London to do terrorist duties.  Effectively, Cllr Drury’s ward of Eltham North, and all the others in the Eltham area (except Middle Park and Sutcliffe) had experienced a cut in police numbers. 

Cllr Nigel Fletcher also spoke on the strategy and pointed out that the huge amount of form filling required each time someone is stopped on the street meant that, in his opinion, there was a danger that the police would stop less people, even just to talk to them.