In the Media

Survey finds 25% never see police on patrol

PUBLISHED November 18, 2011

Figures reveal that there has been a year-on-year increase in public awareness of police over last four years One person in four has never seen a police officer on foot patrol in their neighbourhood, according to a Home Office study. The figures were released yesterday after 46,000 respondents in England and Wales were questioned about their experiences and perceptions of policing as part of the British Crime Survey. The study found that 55% had seen a police officer or police community support officer (PCSO) on the streets at least once a month and two-fifths had seen an officer walking the beat at least once a week. A quarter of people questioned said they never saw officers on foot patrol in their area ? an improvement on 2006/2007, when 40% answered the same. The authors of the report revealed the 2010/11 figure was similar to last year's but there had been a year-on-year increase in public awareness from four years ago, when the question was introduced. Awareness of local neighbourhood policing teams rose from 39% in 2009/10 to 44% in 2010/11, while a third of respondents (32%) said they had seen, read or heard details about their local police. The report found that 23% of respondents had made contact with the police in 2010/11, most commonly to report personal or household crime. This was a fall from 43% in 1993. "It is not possible to be certain of the reasons for this fall, but they are likely to include police deployment, policing methods and falls in actual levels of crime," the report said. Chief Constable Steve Finnigan, of the Association of Chief Police Officers, said: "There are encouraging trends around people's awareness of neighbourhood policing teams across the country, as well as increases in their confidence to contact police to ensure the service is more accessible and responsive to local concerns. "There is no doubt the funding cuts to the police have presented challenges in protecting the frontline. However, chief constables are committed to maintaining the service's approach to neighbourhood policing and providing a visible, accessible and responsive service that tackles the issues that matter most to local people." Police Crime Cherry Wilson © 2011 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds