Portslade councillors raise concern over cut in PCSO numbers

Posted On 17 Sep 2016 at 12:21 pm

Portslade’s four Labour councillors have expressed their concern that there is now only one police community support officer (PCSO) for the whole of Portslade.

There are also no PCSOs based at Portslade Town Hall where they had been stationed for some of the week.

The councillors also said that the Sussex Police website was confusing for residents as the Portslade section shows six PCSOs.

Councillor Peter Atkinson said: “Less than 6 months ago we had three PCSOs in Portslade. They produced an excellent local newsletter and worked really well with local residents, councillors and businesses.

“They had good local knowledge and intelligence and were highly valued by all. There is now just one.”

Local residents have been contacting their councillors to express their concern. This has, obviously, been heightened with the two recent incidents in Portslade.

Shana Grice, 19, was murdered in her home in Chrisdory Road, Mile Oak, on Thursday 25 August and last Saturday (10 September) a boy was stabbed outside the Co-op on the corner of Abinger Road and Shelldale Road.

Portslade councillors Les Hamilton, Alan Robins, Peter Atkinson and Penny Gilbey

Portslade councillors Les Hamilton, Alan Robins, Peter Atkinson and Penny Gilbey

Sussex Police have already made cost savings of more than £50 million over the past five years. As a result the force has 700 fewer officers and staff – 500 police officers and 200 staff.

Three hundred more posts in the force will go as it seeks to save a further £56 million by 2020.

The Portslade councillors said that residents were concerned that they would not have the same level of service where it counts – on the streets.

Councillor Penny Gilbey has already written to Chief Superintendent Nev Kemp, the police commander for Brighton and Hove, outlining concerns about the reforms.

And the councillors plan to contact the Sussex police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne.

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