Starmer launches community policing guarantee to get “more police in your town, fighting antisocial behaviour, taking back our streets”

Keir Starmer will today launch Labour’s Community Policing Guarantee to make streets safe again.  

Announcing the five-point plan in his speech to Labour Party Conference, the Labour leader will pledge guaranteed town centre patrols through 13,000 more neighbourhood police and PCSOs on the streets. 

The Community Policing Guarantee also includes new commitments to ensure local people are involved in setting local policing priorities, tough new sentencing for assaults on retail workers, tougher police action on shoplifting and stronger powers for local councils, police and courts to introduce zero tolerance zones in town centres to stop antisocial behaviour.    

In his speech, Keir Starmer is expected to “call time on wasteful police procurement” which funds Labour’s plan for new officers and say that Labour’s community policing guarantee will deliver “more police in your town, fighting anti-social behaviour, taking back our streets.” 

This comes as research shows 50 per cent of the public say they never see an officer on the beat – up from 27 per cent when Labour left office in 2010. Criminal damage affecting town centres is up nearly 20 per cent on pre-pandemic levels, and more than 20 million people have personally experienced or witnessed ASB in the last 12 months. 

Labour’s Community Policing Guarantee 

Labour will put police back in your town centres and neighbourhoods to make streets safe again, with increased patrols and 13,000 more neighbourhood police & PCSOs on the streets. 

1. Police on the beat again 

We’ll bring back proper neighbourhood policing by ensuring every part of the country has more local officers and PCSOs, and guaranteed town centre patrols with tougher powers. We’ll give every community a named officer they can get in touch with, so policing gets back to what it’s supposed to do. 

2. Zero tolerance of antisocial behaviour 

Getting tough with those who blight our towns, with new powers to ban repeat offenders from town centres and stamp out public drinking and drug use. Every local area will have a dedicated lead focused specifically on tackling anti-social behaviour. 

3. A crackdown on shoplifting and violence   
We’ll reverse the Tories’ decision to downgrade the response to shoplifting under £200, making it easier to take action against repeat offenders and ending the farce of offending impunity, and creating a new specific offence of assault against retail workers. 

4. Put communities back at the heart of policing 

We will give local people and businesses a say in how their local area and town centre is policed, ensuring the police work with them on deciding priorities. 

5. Make community policing something to be proud of 

We will ensure that the path to career progression in policing is through getting to know your community – and ensure all neighbourhood officers are properly trained to be problem-solvers, not just recorders of crime. We will also work with the College of Policing and police chiefs to ensure neighbourhood policing has access to cutting edge technology and methods, including data analytics and hotspot policing.