Frontline police officers are beginning to lose their jobs as radical cost-cutting measures prove inevitable for the UK’s forces.
Both Gloucestershire and Hampshire forces are together set to cut hundreds of police officer and staff posts this year as they scramble to save money amid a lack of government funding.
Gloucestershire is set to cut up to 60 police officers, 28 police community support officers and a further 50 police staff posts. Hampshire has announced a total of 200 jobs, including 100 non-operational police officer jobs, will be axed by the end of the year.
Meanwhile, Scotland’s largest force, Strathclyde, revealed it must make efficiency savings of more than £40m over the next two years, sending alarm bells that job cuts are inevitable.
The proposed cutbacks are a major signal that the deepening credit crisis is now affecting frontline services, not just back-office or management roles in the public sector.
Both Gloucestershire and Hampshire plan to use recruitment freezes and natural turnover to help keep the numbers down, rather than relying on voluntary redundancy.