Dozens more police officers announced for Norfolk and Suffolk
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Almost 70 new police officers will be hitting the streets of Norfolk and Suffolk after the government announced recruitment targets for the first wave of 20,000 new staff.
Forces in the East of England will be able to recruit 463 new officers in the first phase of the recruitment with Norfolk set for 67 officers, increasing numbers by 4per cent.
The Home Office has said that strengthening police numbers is a priority for the government with £750 million to be spent on recuiting up to 6,000 officers nationally by the end of 2020-21, the first stage in the new uplift.
It foillows additional funding announced by the chancellor in the spending review.
While first-year recruitment target for Norfolk is 67, it is 54 in Suffolk, 62 in Cambridgeshire, 54 in Bedfordshire and 91 in Hertfordshire.
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Home Secreatary Priti Patel set out her vision for policing when she chaired the second meeting of the National Policing Board, involving representatives of frontline officers and police leaders.
She said: "The public are clear they want to see more police officers on their streets, whether they live in the city or the countryside.
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"This is the people's priority and it is exactly what the government is delivering.
"This means that citizens across the East of England will see up to 463 new officers keeping a watchful eye on their communities and helping to cut crime."
Norfolk's deputy chief constable Paul Sanford said: "We welcome any plans to increase police officer numbers. We now await further details as to the amount of funding that will be allocated to Norfolk to allow the Constabulary to make this happen."
All officers recruited as part of the 20,000 uplift will be additional to those hired to fill existing vacancies.
Government funding for recruitment in 2020-21 will cover all associated costs, including training and kit.
John Apter, chairman of the Police Federation, said: "Investment in policing is long overdue and for the first time we now have the actual number of officers each local force will increase by in the next year.