Shaun Bailey has made a major manifesto pledge to reopen thirty-eight police stations closed by Sadiq Khan.
Shaun said that tackling crime in London is the single biggest issue facing the next London Mayor. He argued that police station visibility is a central plank of making Londoners feel safe in their communities again, making engaging with the police much easier, building a stronger local police presence and improving community relations with the police.
The current Mayor has prioritised funding press officers over police officers despite the murder rate peaking at an 11-year high.
Shaun will ensure local police stations return to pre-Khan levels – 73 stations – to ensure a minimum of two police stations per borough.
Despite 29 of the 38 stations closed by Khan earmarked to be ‘disposed of’, only three stations have either been sold or have seen their leases end, meaning 35 of the 38 stations remain in the MET’s estate but are not open to the public to report crimes.
Shaun would pay for reopening the much-needed stations with a new Police Stations Fund, funded by the underspend in the Mayor’s Strategic Investment Fund. Despite Khan’s pledge to spend £112m, there remains £51m unallocated. Using Sadiq Khan’s own figures, the cost of the police stations reopening programme would be £8million a year, or £32 million over a Mayoral term. Since becoming Mayor, Sadiq Khan has increased spending on his own staff by £30 million alone.
As a former youth worker, Shaun knows how crucial a permanent police presence is, which is why he will reverse all closures and increase the number of police stations back to pre-Khan levels.
Commenting, mayoral candidate Shaun Bailey said:
“I was a youth worker for over 20 years. I know the streets, I know how they operate, and I know how to tackle crime.
“A strong local police presence changes the culture, it makes it harder for criminals to operate, and a stronger local presence leads to better police-community relations – all good things.
“The current Mayor finds money to increase spending on his own PR and staff while closing police stations and failing to get a grip on soaring crime in our capital.
“London needs leadership, not excuses, it’s the only way to make London safe.”