Single police force "a step too far" for Greens

For immediate release 19 April 2011

Greens responded to today's Scottish Police Federation event with a pledge to oppose SNP, Labour and Tory plans for a single national police force. The party believes the costs would be too high as public budgets come under growing pressure, and that local control would be lost.

Patrick Harvie said:

"These proposals are ill-conceived and ill-timed. There may well be a case for police force mergers, perhaps into clear regional forces, but it would be very expensive in the short term, and it would be a daft idea to embark upon it when the Scottish budget is under so much pressure. The next Scottish Government should take its time, consult widely, and draw breath, not rush into a grand national project where so little thought has been given to the detail.

"We need to consider the whole of Scottish policing and support the service appropriately, not just focus on headline figures for police officers. That obsession has squeezed budgets for the civilian staff who make our police forces tick, and ironically it risks undermining the very frontline services the other parties claim to be protecting."