Tuesday 22 September 2020 / 8:24 PM Nick Thomas-Symonds / Policing

Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, seeks clarity over military support for the police

Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, has written to Priti Patel to seek clarity on the Prime Minister’s announcement in the House of Commons of ‘the option to draw on military support where required to free up the police’ during the tightening of coronavirus measures.

The letter states that leaning on the military “shows the extraordinary pressure that policing has been put under, as a result of the thousands of officers lost under this government.”

It asks:

  • What preparatory discussions have been held with representatives from senior policing, frontline officers, Police and Crime Commissioners, Local Authorities and others about the use of the military to support policing;
  • What are the duties that have been recommended by policing representatives that military support could help fulfil?
  • Have any discussions been held about the military fulfilling any public facing roles?
  • How long is the initial period of support offer available and what is the estimated cost to the military?
  • If this is a longer-term commitment, will additional training be required for military personnel?

In the letter, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary added that there are concerns that there has been insufficient consultation with senior police figures on this significant announcement.