Government slammed by Labour for making ‘shoplifting easier’

Government slammed by Labour for making ‘shoplifting easier’
Georgia Pearce

By Georgia Pearce

Published: 28/11/2023

- 12:25

Alex Norris MP also said cutting police numbers has been ‘a total disaster’

Labour's Alex Norris MP has slammed the Government for causing a shoplifting epidemic by downgrading the seriousness of the crime and cutting police numbers.

The shadow policing minister told GB News: “What we've seen is nearly a decade, certainly since the disastrous decision to downgrade thefts under £200, nearly a decade of public policy choices that have made shoplifting easier.

“It’s why we’ve seen a significant rise, a quarter up in the last year alone, a huge rise in violence and abuse against retail workers, 850 every day, so whether you call it a charter or anything else that is hugely important and needs very swift action.”

In a discussion during Breakfast with Eamonn Holmes and Isabel Webster, he continued: “That tells us a story about police, policing in this country and how we've been policed over the last decade.

“It shows that the decision to cut police was a total disaster. But what we've seen now as those police officers are being added back is that they're often not in the right places.

“We're hearing really concerning stories about police officers, warranted officers with those skills and talents to be in neighbourhoods, deterring, tackling crime actually being put in roles that perhaps you would call in the back office, which are important roles that were traditionally done by civilian staff, because of budget pressures.”

He added: “That's why we've made our commitment for 10,000 more police and police community support officers in neighbourhoods, on the frontline. We think that's how you'd make an impact on it.”

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