Police numbers show powers best held in Scotland

The release today (Tuesday) of the latest quarterly police numbers reinforces the benefits of Scotland controlling its own justice policy.  Figures published show the SNP continues to maintain the commitment to 1,000 extra police officers on Scotland’s streets, with the current number of officers at 17,373. This is a rise of 1,139 from the position in 2007 when the SNP were elected. The figure also represents an increase from the same time last year.  The latest figures again highlight the differing approaches north and south of the border – in England and Wales 16,000 police jobs are being cut and the terms and conditions of police officers are being attacked. In Scotland crime is at a 37-year-low and fear of crime has also fallen, along with a decrease in the risk of being a victim of crime.  John Finnie, SNP MSP for the Highlands and Islands and former serving police officer with the Northern Constabulary, welcomed the figures published today. He said: "The rise in police officers under the SNP shows that the Scottish Government remains committed to keeping our communities safe and tackling crime. "People in Scotland are feeling safer in their communities. Unfortunately, south of the border there is now the lowest number of officers since 2003 and an estimated 16,000 police are likely to lose their jobs due to UK Coalition funding cuts. “In Scotland, police reform will ensure that policing is protected and communities throughout the country are kept safe.”  Notes: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Resource/0040/00401096.pdf