Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Greens call on Mayor to rethink police station closures

Streatham dad - and co-leader of the Green Party - Jonathan Bartley is calling on the Mayor of London to stop overriding the wishes of Londoners and rethink the closure of police front counters and stations across the capital.

Jonathan Bartley made the call as he handed in a 1300-strong petition to save Streatham police base at City Hall as the Mayor announced that more than half of London’s remaining front counters will be closed.

Jonathan Bartley said: “The Mayor has the chance to show Londoners he cares about their safety by reversing the decision to close police stations and front counters. 

“This consultation has clearly been a short, shallow and inadequate process. It is clear Londoners' concerns have been side lined, with so few changes made to the Mayor’s plans following consultation it raises serious questions about the adequacy and depth of the consultation. Even more concerning is the fact London’s most vulnerable residents, who will be affected most by these decisions, were given so little time to respond.”

The police station in Streatham opened just two years ago after the community successfully campaigned for a £500,000 investment for the new building close to Streatham train station. Now residents will be forced to go several miles to Brixton if they need to visit a station.
Jonathan added: "Closing the front counter of Streatham police station is a slap in the face to all those who, at very short notice, contributed to the Mayor’s consultation on the understanding their concerns would be listened to.

“The community in Streatham is clearly opposed to the closure of its station, and has been left reeling by this week’s announcement. It appears the decision to close the front counter has been made so quickly that the future for police building itself has been overlooked and isn’t even mentioned in the Mayors decision.”

London Assembly Member and Deputy Chair of the London Assembly's Police and Crime Committee Sian Berry is also challenging the decision.

She said: "Within just three weeks off the back of a rushed consultation the Met have announced barely a single change to their plans to close stations and front counters across London.
"People in places like Streatham, where a £500,000 front counter and local police base is to close after just two years, have engaged with the process in good faith, but their petitions haven’t even had time to be digested before final decisions have been made. 
"If the police want to increase the trust Londoners have in them, they should be listening not brushing off local concerns like this."

You can read the Mayor's draft strategy on police base closures here.

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