Future Of Local Police Teams Assured

Safer Neighbourhood Teams to continue

The number of police officers working as part of Safer Neighbourhood Teams in Merton is going to be maintained, Boris Johnson has assured residents.

His announcement follows fears that the borough's popular Safer Neighbourhood Teams were going to be cut in size.

At Prime Minister’s Question Time, Mitcham and Morden MP, Siobhan McDonagh had claimed that Merton SNTs had been merged and each one would have only one police officer.

But, answering a question at the London Assembly, Mr Johnson, said: "The borough has not changed its model for neighbourhood teams.

"People like them and we have worked very very hard to maintain one safer neighbourhood team for each of London’s 638 wards.

"I have been very clear: the formula for which we have made provisions is two PCs and three PCSOs in every ward. I think that is a very good outcome for London."

As part of an ongoing Safer Neighbourhoods Review in Merton, consultation is now continuing on the option to create nine neighbourhood teams across the existing 20 wards, each to contain two to three wards.

A Merton police spokesman said: "Merton borough has not changed its model of Safer Neighbourhood Teams. The review has always been undertaken based on the position that there are no plans within the current MPS budget to reduce the overall PC/PCSO numbersacross the Met, or within boroughs including Merton. However the purpose of the review is to consider how these resources are best deployed operationally and what they deliver in terms of their services to local communities."

The option to create nine neighbourhood teams is to "have a higher level of flexibility to focus on specific, problem-solving issues as determined by the local borough", the spokesman added.

April 7, 2011