The police and cuts

Submitted by AWL on 6 November, 2019 - 9:00

Local Labour Parties are still distributing leaflets which make Labour’s prime play the call for more police.

The call should be instead for cutting the social roots of crime. Stop school exclusions. End the “exam factory” culture and tinpot authoritarianism which make schools inhospitable for many students, and worsen the mental-illness epidemic among teenagers.

Give social services the resources and funding so that they can actually do family support work, and not just crisis control.

Develop enough clean, safe social housing that everyone has a decent home. Make benefits adequate. Restore the NHS.

Create a society of solidarity, rather than of dog-eat-dog competition.

More police on the streets, doing more stop and search, roughing up and further alienating more working-class and black and ethnic-minority young people, are the last thing we need.

A ten-year study compiled from the Metropolitan Police’s own data showed that stop and search did not reduce violent crime. And stop and search is ten times more likely to target black and ethnic-minority youth.

Society will continue to need policing for a long while to come. But we should call for more democratically-accountable policing, rather than just a boost to the same sort of police force that harasses picket lines.

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