Consultation is under way around the proposed restructure of West Yorkshire Police Divisions
Chief Constable Mark Gilmore said today (Saturday):“Improving performance in the face of shrinking budgets is at the heart of the proposed restructure of West Yorkshire Police Divisions.
“We have to find a further £64m in savings over the next three years, while delivering on the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Plan, making communities safer and feeling safer.
“That is a significant challenge and can only be achieved by making some bold, transformational changes.
“Our commitment is to create an even better service to the public at local level, not just from the police, but from all agencies working together as cohesive neighbourhood management teams.
“It’s clear that if we are going to do that, the current three Division structure in Leeds is no longer viable. A single Division will ensure we adopt the same geographic area as our key partner, Leeds City Council. It also means we can have a leaner management structure, something we want to bring in across the whole Force in the next few years. Less managers and more doers is the principle.
“Consultation in Force and with partner organisations in Leeds is at an advanced stage, but throughout the process, we are committed to consulting with our own staff, our partners and the public, to ensure we make the choice which is best for the people of West Yorkshire.
“The shape of policing is changing. Challenged by reduced budgets, we are making innovative use of new technology; ensuring officers spend more time on the street and less time in the station. We are putting officers where they are needed, in the communities they serve.
“We are confident that the reduction in Divisions and removal of police “boundaries” will make us more effective, not less. Similar reviews are under way in each district across the rest of West Yorkshire, but the principle is the same. Closer working at a local level, to provide a service that is not just good, but excellent.”