Public Force Further Consultation Over Police Desks in Dorset
8:41am 17th December 2013
There's going to be more consultation over plans to get rid of some police station enquiry desks in Dorset.
The move would save the force 500 thousand pounds in the wake of ongoing Government cuts to the Police budget.
After listening to our concerns, they're now going to consult with us again in the New Year about how they can work with other agencies to keep the provision going.
Police Constable Debbie Simpson says she's confident a counter service will remain in Weymouth.
Police and Crime Commissioner Martyn Underhill said: "When the Force and I launched the consultation process in early October, I said that it was important to me that we listen to all of our communities about the proposals. This is why I've been meeting with residents, partner agencies and other key stakeholders to make sure that as many views as possible are captured.
"As a result of this consultation process, a number of alternative suggestions have been proposed and I'm keen that more detailed proposals are shared with the public and explored further. That, for me, is what consultation is all about.
"For that reason, the Force will once again launch a public consultation process in the early part of 2014 in the hope that members of the public will share their views on the options available and help us to make some very difficult decisions."
Senior officers, including the Chief Constable and PCC, approved a recommendation that [two/three] specific proposals should be the subject of further stakeholder engagement and public consultation at the Force Executive Board, held at Dorset Police headquarters today, Monday 16 December 2013.
Chief Constable Debbie Simpson said: "As anticipated, the consultation process has highlighted that any changes to local policing will generate considerable discussion, as well as a range of alternative suggestions for how we can deliver services.
"Many of the suggestions that the Force has received involve working in partnership with other agencies to deliver joint counter service provision in the future. There have also been concerns about losing counter service provision in North Dorset.
"I can confirm that counter service provision will remain in Bournemouth, Weymouth and North Dorset. We are also developing opportunities to share services with partner agencies and these ideas are being explored in more detail. The Force will provide specific proposals for consultation in the coming weeks.
"We have also found that there remains some confusion about the difference between the potential closure of station desks and the closure of police stations. I would like to stress that a change to counter service provision in a town does not equate to the closure of the town's police station. The Force continues to ensure that there is a policing footprint in every town in Dorset."