City Hall Tories condemned Sadiq Khan’s plan today to cut London’s policing budget by nearly £110 million after the Mayor’s own opinion poll revealed 80% of Londoners expect crime to rise after coronavirus.
The “damning” result was found by a City Hall opinion poll for Sadiq Khan conducted by YouGov. It also revealed that 61% of Londoners expect crime to soar back to 2019’s record levels or exceed them. Only 4% of Londoners expected crime to stay at the same levels as during lockdown.
GLA Conservatives’ Leader Susan Hall AM said the result was a “damning verdict from Londoners on the Mayor’s ability to keep our city safe”. Ms Hall accused Khan of “ignoring” Londoners’ priorities by planning to cut London’s policing budget.
The Mayor announced in June that he was looking to slash London’s policing budget by nearly £110 million to plug the £493 million gap in City Hall’s finances due to coronavirus. He is expected to publish his formal policing draft budget in the coming weeks.
In 2019, homicide reached an 11-year high in the capital and knife crime reached record levels with more than 15,000 blade offences. Crime fell in the capital after the country was locked down.
Susan Hall AM, GLA Conservatives’ Leader, commented: “This is a damning verdict from Londoners on the Mayor’s ability to keep our city safe. It’s no surprise that only 4% of Londoners think crime won’t rise again after watching Sadiq Khan fail to keep London safe for four years. “On the Mayor’s watch, homicide rose to an 11-year high and knife crime reached record levels. Coronavirus may have reduced crime temporarily, but it won’t stay low unless Sadiq Khan ditches his failed approach. The Mayor needs to cut his bloated City Hall budgets to protect and bolster policing in London.
“Sadiq Khan would be ignoring Londoners’ priorities if he cut London’s policing budget by nearly £110 million. No Londoner wants to see the police cut so Khan can protect his extravagant PR machine at City Hall. It’s not too late for the Mayor to listen to Londoners and do the right thing to keep our city safe.”