Call for better communication over Wolverhampton crime

Wednesfield High Street. Photo: Google

At a Partners and Communities Together (PACT) meeting in Wednesfield in May, community officers were quizzed about a steady rise in crime in the area from seven per cent to ten and-a-half per cent over the previous 12 months.

Councillor Phil Bateman said the increase showed “a worrying trend” and appealed for clearer and more regular channels of communication between West Midlands Police and city councillors.

He said members of the public were frequently contacting councillors with queries about local crime, when in reality they should have called police.

Councillor Bateman has now put forward a motion on the matter to be discussed by full council on Wednesday.

“This city council is concerned and dismayed over the poor public information arrangements that West Midlands Police are currently operating,” he said.

“Police UK, which informs the public on the actions and performances and local crime and detection, is still deficient and does not carry West Midlands performance rates.

“West Midlands Police also do not update their electronic information on the changes in ward cover and the teams performing crime fighting duties in the city’s wards.

“Added to that, there are no up-to-date crime level statistics for wards across the city which the public can read, digest and then support. There are concerns across our city that crime is rising and that is compounded by the fact that there are no detection rates or other important statistics on show to benchmark, prove or measure criminal effects on our communities,” he added.

“There is no current up-to-date public information on police strength by city wards that the public can rely upon. Wulfrunians will be growing away from the police if their requirements to know what is happening in their communities are not heeded, or their need for information on crime and its solutions continues to be ignored.

“The ‘thin blue line’ still has less police in service in Wolverhampton than it had in 2010, yet our population has soared in that same period. It could appear to some that West Midlands Police are appearing to ignore the public in our city.

“This council therefore calls on West Midlands Police to greatly improve its communications and create better links between elected members and community leaders in the awards they serve,” said Councillor Bateman.

West Midlands Police has been contacted for comment.

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