Outrage' at cut in crime fight cash
PUBLISHED: 14:42 10 February 2010 | UPDATED: 10:59 12 August 2010
A COUNCILLOR has slammed the Home Office for slashing a grant aimed at helping cut anti-social behaviour in the borough. The Home Office wrote to Bromley
A COUNCILLOR has slammed the Home Office for slashing a grant aimed at helping cut anti-social behaviour in the borough.
The Home Office wrote to Bromley council last month to inform it that the £96,000 Safer and Stronger Communities capital grant would be halved this year.
The grant funds graffiti removal, flytipping removal and crime prevention through the borough's Safer Bromley van.
Chairman of Safer Bromley Partnership Colin Bloom wrote to the Home Office last Thursday to express his "outrage" at the "savage cuts".
He wrote: "Is it fair that we should be forced to withdraw support from some of the most vulnerable people in our borough - many of whom are elderly? We have a greater proportion of older people than virtually every other London borough and some real pockets of deprivation, but this is never reflected in our share of grant money.
"Indeed, here in Bromley we are languishing on the grant floor and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. This further cut in resources will yet again undermine our sincere efforts to improve the quality of life for everyone in the borough. I believe the people of Bromley deserve better."
He told the Times: "I am furious that this severe cut in the capital grant will result in the partnership having no alternative but to stop some of its successful work. People in Bromley generally feel safe, but how long will this be the case if we have to stop doing things such as helping protect vulnerable people's homes, or have to curtail community clean-up days and restrict the quantity of crime prevention advice given to residents."
Policing and Crime Minister David Hanson said: "The government remains committed to supporting local authorities in their work against crime and anti-social behaviour, which is why the Home Office spends £7 billion a year on fighting crime and supporting the police.
"The Safer and Stronger Communities Fund is just one source of capital support for local authorities, who will receive more than £8 billion next year from government.
"Finances across the public sector are under pressure and the Home Office has made tough choices to ensure budgets for front-line staff like police officers and capital funding to police forces are protected to help keep crime down - as shown by the eight per cent fall in recorded crime in recent quarterly figures.