In the latest in our series of profiles, Labour Police and Crime Commissioner candidate Olly Martins tells us why he is the right man for the job...
“Bedfordshire is losing 185 police officers and 76 PCSOs, together with 30 patrol cars, as a result of the Conservative/LibDem government’s 20 per cent police budget cuts.
“Axeing more than half of our PCSOs and forcing this shocking reduction in police strength means that the visible neighbourhood policing people value so much is becoming a thing of the past.
“In 2010 police numbers were at record levels, crime had fallen by 43 per cent over the previous 13 years and the chance of being a victim of crime was at a 30 year low. Now all of this is being jeopardised by the policies of this out of touch government, at the same time as a cabinet minister swears at the police protecting him and calls them ‘plebs’.
“I know that people of all political persuasions and none are angry about what is being done to our police and intent on using the November 15 election to send this message to the government.
“Next year Chancellor George Osborne will publish the next spending review, which is expected to herald a further round of deep cuts, as a consequence of this government’s failed economic policies. A number of Chief Constables, including our own, have said further cuts to the police will undermine the fight against crime.
“That is why Bedfordshire needs a Police and Crime Commissioner who, rather than just toeing the party line and supporting police cuts and privatisation, will fight these cuts and stand up for what our police need. That is exactly what I will do.
“Eight years with Victim Support, local government and military experience, together with running the office of a senior MP in Parliament, give me the right background to be an effective Police and Crime Commissioner, and a champion for our county.”