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Council-funded police officers hit the streets

Police and Councillors meet outside Hornchurch Police Station
Published: Monday, 3 February 2020

Five new Council-funded bobbies on the beat have arrived in Havering as part of the Council’s commitment to make the borough safer.

The officers will work as part of Havering’s new enforcement and safety team, ensuring that there is a consistent presence on the streets and that resources are being used in the best way to tackle crime and disorder. The new team, called the Havering Joint Task Force will:

  • Lead on joint enforcement operations across the borough.
  • Target offending behaviour whilst supporting victims and reducing repeat victimisation.
  • Be intelligence-led and tasked to tackle identified crime and anti-social behaviour hotspots.
  • Undertake tactical interventions to prevent and detect offences to reduce fear of crime and make residents feel safer.
  • Support the Council's enforcement services and other agencies in tackling crime and disorder issues in Havering.
  • Improve enforcement of legislation such as Public Space Protection Orders (PSPO), and the Unlawful Encampment injunction that is in place to prevent associated crime and anti-social behaviour.

Since starting in early January, the new officers have arrested eleven people including wanted burglars, suspected drug dealers, and seized sixteen stolen vehicles. A recent burglary operation with Metropolitan Police and Essex Police saw thirteen further arrests, six stolen vehicles recovered and intelligence gathered.

The Council-funded officers are based in Hornchurch Police Station, concentrating their efforts solely on Havering to tackle issues that are important to local people. In order to do this, the officers will be ring-fenced from Metropolitan Police duties such as policing football matches and local events.

They may, however, be used by the Metropolitan Police on high demand days for public order issues or in cases of emergency.

Leader of Havering Council, Councillor Damian White, said:

"These are Havering police officers, paid by Havering, for Havering. Their work, as part of our new enforcement and safety team, will allow us to prioritise and allocate resources to tackle the issues that need an immediate response and clamp down on crime in our community.

"Whether it is the threat of violent crime, or the concern of antisocial behaviour, we are listening to residents’ concerns. Our commitment to put extra police officers on our streets, as well as our close working relationship with the Metropolitan Police, is crucial in making Havering an even safer place to live.”

The investment of around £300,000 a year for the next three years will give an increased police presence in the community and see the new officers working alongside existing police officers and other partners to tackle anti-social behaviour and target law enforcement.

The Council is able to pay for more policing under a new scheme called Partnership Plus, introduced by the Metropolitan Police in February 2019. Under the scheme, the Council will be able to explore additional funding with other partners.