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City MP backs Guide Dogs campaign on the use of e-scooters

Stephen Morgan MP has backed a campaign led by the Guide Dogs charity to raise awareness of the danger that unsafe e-scooter use poses for people with sight loss.

Portsmouth is currently one of the cities in England trialling an e-scooter rental scheme to help the government to determine whether they can be used legally more widely across the country. However, there has been a boom in sales of privately-owned e-scooters which are not legal to use on public roads – yet their use is widespread.

YouGov polling produced for the charity Guide Dogs showed that 92% of people who had seen an e-scooter in the past 6 months, had seen one driven on the pavement. E-scooters driven unsafely on the pavement cause problems for many pedestrians, but people with sight loss who cannot see an e-scooter approach are particularly at risk.

The Portsmouth MP has written to the Home Secretary on the issue after his constituents raised similar concerns, as well as requesting further detail on government plans to protect and regulate against the continued illegal use and sale of e-scooters for use in public spaces and roads.

Mr Morgan will also be meeting the local provider of the e-scooter scheme to raise matters with them too.

Stephen Morgan MP is supporting Guide Dogs’ call for a public information campaign to stop the illegal use of e-scooters.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, said:

“It is clear from conversations with constituents that e-scooters pose a risk to some vulnerable people.

“The government has got to come forward with a clear strategy on how it plans to better protect those most at risk to e-scooters, whether that’s through local rental schemes or illegal use of ones that are privately owned.

“That’s why I’m supporting the Guide Dogs’ campaign and will continue to keep pressure on government, in addition to the range of actions I have taken already on this important issue.”

Chris Theobald, Senior Policy, Public Affairs and Campaigns Manager for Guide Dogs, said:

“We have seen alarming reports of unsafe and anti-social behaviour, pedestrians injured in collisions, and illegal private e-scooter use increasing. 68% of guide dog owners have told us that e-scooters reduce their confidence to leave the house.

“It’s essential that pavements are kept clear and safe. That’s why we’re asking for better enforcement, controls on sales, and safety features if they are to be legalised.”

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Labour’s policing plans would see a ‘new era’ of community safety for Portsmouth – City MP

Stephen Morgan MP has welcomed new plans that the next Labour Government would bring back neighbourhood policing to tackle the epidemic of anti-social behaviour, saying it would bring about a ‘new era’ for community safety.

The Portsmouth MP has long called for changes to local police funding and a boost to police numbers to tackle anti-social behaviour and violence against women and girls.

Accusing the Conservatives of being “soft on crime and soft on causes on crime”, Shadow Home Secretary Nick Thomas-Symonds will announce Labour’s new plans for increased visible policing, including:

  • An increased police presence in communities with the national rollout of Police Hubs, each with its own Neighbourhood Prevention Team to ensure anti-social behaviour and other crimes in the communities are tackled quickly;
  • Police Hubs, located in visible and accessible places in communities, providing a place the public can go to talk to the police and other agencies in person about their concerns in an area;
  • Neighbourhood Prevention Teams bringing together police, community support officers, youth workers and local authority staff to tackle anti-social behaviour at source. They will be connected into a next generation neighbourhood watch, which will bring people together to share advice and information about their area through online networks and backed with a tough approach to closing down drug dens;
  • A major recruitment drive to increase the number of Special Constables, whose numbers have fallen sharply since 2010; and
  • A new Child Exploitation Register for those convicted of modern slavery offences linked to county lines drug dealing.

Since 2010, the Conservatives have slashed police funding by £1.6 billion and cut thousands of police from our streets.

Meanwhile, recent research from the Labour Party has revealed there are 708 fewer police officers on the frontline in Hampshire than in 2010. There are also 110 fewer community support officers (PCSOs) in Hampshire police force area.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, said,

“For years now, maintaining community safety in Portsmouth has become increasingly challenging as local services continue to experience chronic underfunding and support.

“A Labour government would see an end to this, putting police back on our streets, with stronger powers to keep our communities safe.

“I’ve committed to making our city safer a top priority of mine and these plans implemented with Labour in power will enable us to see that change and bring about a new era of community safety in Portsmouth.”

In addition to making the city safer a ‘top priority’, Mr Morgan has also launched a city-wide survey to better understand local views and challenges for antisocial behaviour and public safety in Portsmouth, regularly met with police to discuss issues and concerns, as well as campaigning for fairer funding for Hampshire Constabulary.

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Making our city safer: local MP joins Police night patrol in latest action to tackle crime

Stephen Morgan MP has joined local Police on a night patrol in Portsmouth in his latest intervention to help support those working to make the city safer and bring down crime.

The Portsmouth MP joined a local Police Sergeant and others in the Charles Dickens area on Friday evening to learn further insights about the specific challenges and issues the area is facing to public safety.

The patrol also included an opportunity for the local representative to hear first-hand how junior officers are being coached, with one being tutored as part of the late-night exercise.

It comes after the city MP recently made making the city safer a ‘top priority’, after launching a city-wide survey to better understand local views and challenges for antisocial behaviour and public safety in Portsmouth.

Meanwhile, recent research from the Labour Party has revealed there are 708 fewer police officers on the frontline in Hampshire than in 2010. There are also 110 fewer community support officers (PCSOs) in Hampshire police force area.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, commented,

“On the night patrol I saw first-hand the challenges we are facing locally to protect public safety. It was a useful opportunity to share constituent concerns about crime in the local area directly with those who are working to keep us safe.

“Our local Police officers are working tirelessly to keep our streets safe, but it’s painfully clear they are having to do more with less.

“This government has continually let down our officers. Hampshire has one of the poorest levels of local police funding and frontline officers in the country, and now the Home Secretary has given officers a real-terms pay cut. It’s no wonder the Police Federation has lost its confidence in her.

“I will continue to work on behalf of the city’s police and my constituents to ensure government delivers the fair pay and funding our police deserve, as well as its promises to keep us all safe.”

You can complete Mr Morgan’s survey via the link on his website: https://www.stephenmorgan.org.uk/have-your-say-crime-and-safety-in-portsmouth/

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Tory spin on police numbers exposed as 19 per cent drop in frontline police at Hampshire police force

New Labour analysis lays bare the huge gaps in the workforce at Hampshire police after ten years of Tory cuts.

Over the course of the last decade under successive Tory governments, the number of police on the streets in Hampshire has been decimated.

Research from the Labour Party reveals there are 708 fewer police officers on the frontline in Hampshire than in 2010. There are also 110 fewer community support officers (PCSOs) in Hampshire police force area.

To put pressure on the Government to properly support our police forces and put more criminals behind bars, the Labour Party, led by Keir Starmer, has launched its Safer Communities campaign, with pledges to crack down on anti-social behaviour and end violence against women and girls.

Stephen Morgan, MP for Portsmouth South, said:

“A decade of Conservative cuts has left police officers doing more with less.

“These cuts undermine the efforts of hard-working frontline officers and have real consequences for the fight against crime. Crime is on the rise and Hampshire police responses have had to be rationed.

“Instead of funding and paying our police force fairly, the Tories offer only pay cuts and gimmicks. Its time this government took the safety of our communities seriously and gave us back our bobbies.”

Sarah Jones MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Policing and the Fire Service, said: 

“The Tories have spent a decade cutting our police workforce, leaving communities across the country exposed.   

“These figures expose the decimation the Tories have caused community policing. While cuts to police staff mean that even new police recruits will end up behind desks backfilling staff roles, instead of on the beat.  

“The Government’s new crime plan is in reality a bunch of rehashed policies designed to distract from the damage they have caused. When coupled with an insulting police pay freeze and failure to consult them on the crime plan, it’s no wonder frontline police have lost confidence in the Home Secretary.” 

 

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Portsmouth MP continues work with police to tackle crime in visit to contact ‘nerve centre’

Stephen Morgan MP has visited the Constabulary’s contact management centre in Southampton as he continues to support the fight against hate crime, violence and anti-social behaviour, amid rising concerns.

The contact management teams, operated by Hampshire Constabulary, works alongside Thames Valley Police, taking emergency 999 calls and handling non-emergency contact via the 101 service.

Those in the Contact Management Centre are responsible for recording detailed crime reports, filing intelligence and managing other general enquiries.

It comes following a decade of cuts to the Police, with workforce figures showing that Hampshire constabulary has just 135 officers per 100,000 people, the lowest of any force in the country.

Hampshire’s Chief Constable has also confirmed that underfunding means police responses have to be rationed.

Meanwhile, Labour has launched its national ‘Safer Communities’ campaign, pledging to crack down on anti-social behaviour and end violence against women and girls.

The visit today took place after the city MP hosted a round table discussion with community groups and campaigners earlier this year with regards to tackling violence against women and girls and efforts to end hate crime.

Mr Morgan was joined on the visit by members of local group Chat Over Chai and Portsmouth’s District Commander.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, commented:

“Residents tell me that hate crime, violence and anti-social behaviour are growing concerns, so I’ve visited Hampshire Constabulary’s contact nerve centre to see how police are working to tackle this.

“Officers have been working tirelessly to keep us safe during the uncertainty of the pandemic and I want to thank them all for their efforts. But increasingly we see they are being let down by central government.”

“A decade of cuts has left police doing more with less. We still have fewer officers than we did a decade ago, and we know that is having an impact on the safety and security of our neighbourhoods. It’s little wonder the Police Federation now has no confidence in the Home Secretary.

“This government needs to cut the gimmicks and get serious about tackling crime in our communities.”

Earlier this month Stephen Morgan launched a city-wide survey to better understand local views and challenges for crime and safety in Portsmouth.

 

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Making Portsmouth safer a ‘top priority’ for local MP as he launches city-wide survey

Stephen Morgan MP has launched a city-wide survey to better understand local views and challenges for public safety in Portsmouth in his latest push to help make the city safer.

Following a decade of cuts, Police workforce figures show that Hampshire constabulary has just 135 officers per 100,000 people, the lowest of any force in the country.

Hampshire’s Chief Constable has also confirmed that underfunding means police responses have to be rationed.

It comes following the launch of Labour’s national ‘Safer Communities’ campaign, pledging to crack down on anti-social behaviour and end violence against women and girls.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, said:

“I know from my postbag, and from being out and about in our city talking with other local people, that antisocial behaviour, drug dealing, and crime in our communities, are real concerns locally.

That’s why it is one of my top priorities to help keep you, your family and your neighbourhood safe, and why I have been busy liaising with the local police, going out on patrol across our city, taking our concerns to the Constabulary’s leadership, and lobbying Government for fairer funding for our area and getting more bobbies back on the beat in Portsmouth.

“Labour will put more police on the streets; stand up for youth clubs and local services; and give communities the resources and powers to tackle crime and antisocial behaviour.

“Help me continue to lobby Government to keep you, your family and your neighbourhood safe by completing my short survey.”

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Making our city safer

I know from my postbag, and from being out and about in our city talking with other local people, that antisocial behaviour, drug dealing, and crime in our communities, are real concerns locally.

In the last year alone one in four people have witnessed or experienced anti-social behaviour. But across the country the Conservative Party is guilty of taking a huge gamble with the public’s safety. Mr Johnson’s fingerprints are all over it: turning a blind eye to antisocial behaviour, drug dealing and crime; slashing neighbourhood policing; and losing the confidence of rank and file police officers.

A decade of cuts means Hampshire has lost more than 1,000 police officers since 2010, and we remain 400 short despite recent increases. Police workforce figures show our constabulary has just 135 officers per 100,000 people, the lowest of any force in the country. Hampshire’s Chief Constable also recently confirmed that underfunding means police responses have to be rationed.

These cuts have real consequences for our city, and our safety. Crime has risen 15% since 2016, with home burglaries and weapon possessions nearly doubling.

That’s why it is one of my top priorities to help keep you, your family and your neighbourhood safe, and why I have been busy liaising with the local police, going out on patrol across our city, taking our concerns to the Constabulary’s leadership, and lobbying Government for fairer funding for our area, and more bobbies back on the beat in Portsmouth.

A Labour government would act where Boris Johnson’s Conservatives have failed and make our streets safer. Under Keir Starmer’s leadership a Labour government would put more police on the streets; stand up for youth clubs and local services; and give communities the resources and powers to tackle crime and antisocial behaviour.

Help me continue to lobby Government to keep you, your family and your neighbourhood safe. Have your say by completing my short survey here.

 Stephen Morgan MP

 

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City MP ‘slams’ Home Secretary for awarding zero percent pay rise to Police

Stephen Morgan MP has today written to the Home Secretary saying that her position is “untenable” following a vote of no confidence from the Police Federation, and demanded action on police pay while setting out key areas in which Priti Patel has failed the police. 

The letter follows the Police Federation of England and Wales declaring yesterday it had ‘no confidence’ in the Home Secretary due to her failure to allow the Police Remuneration Review Body to consider awarding a pay increase to Police Officers. 

This is not the first time that the police have been let down by the Home Secretary. During the early stages of the vaccine rollout, the Home Secretary publicly stated that police officers should be prioritised for receiving the vaccine.

When it was revealed that age and vulnerability, and not profession, would be prioritised for vaccine roll-out, the Police Federation stated that they felt a “deep sense of betrayal”. 

In recent weeks, the Home Secretary has been accused of misleading the House of Commons when she said that she had consulted the Police Federation in the work of developing the Clauses relating to Public Order in the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill.

Yet the Police Federation have confirmed that they had never provided either a written submission or been consulted upon the issues of protest. 

The Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill also legislates for the creation of a Police Covenant. Labour has long argued that it is inappropriate for a Government Minister to Chair the Police Covenant.

The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, said:

“It is the height of hypocrisy for the Home Secretary to praise the police in public with warm words, but let them down so badly when it comes to meaningful action. So it is no surprise that the Police Federation have taken the extraordinary step of confirming that they have lost confidence in Priti Patel.

“Our local Police service is one of the most poorly supported by central government, but the Home Secretary’s recent actions makes her position now clearly untenable. Police deserve nothing less than urgent action from the Prime Minister, which must include opening negotiations on a fair police pay rise and work to reconstitute the Police Covenant.

“That is why I have written to the Home Secretary today to ensure this happens and will continue to lobby Government to secure the fair deal our police deserve.”

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Give us our bobbies back

Stephen Morgan MP is calling on the Home Secretary to fund our police service fairly and give us back the bobbies Tory governments have taken from our city.

A decade of cuts means Hampshire has lost more than 1,000 police officers since 2010, and we remain 400 short despite recent increases.

Police workforce figures show our constabulary has just 135 officers per 100,000 people, the lowest of any force in the country.

This year’s police funding settlement confirms a £21.9m real-terms cut in funding for Hampshire Constabulary over the past decade.

Ministers are heaping the burden onto local taxpayers by raising the council tax precept, instead of funding our safety directly.

These cuts have real consequences for our city, and our safety. Crime has risen 15% since 2016, with home burglaries and weapon possessions nearly doubling.

Hampshire’s Chief Constable recently confirmed that underfunding means police responses have to be rationed.

If, like Stephen, you want safer streets and more bobbies back on the beat, sign his pledge:

Thank you for signing our pledge. Stephen Morgan MP and the Labour Party will use the personal information you provide for the purpose of the ‘Give us our bobbies back’ campaign. Where you have opted in, Stephen and the Labour Party may contact you via the communication channels you have chosen and for the purposes specified. We may also contact you by post using the electoral register, which Stephen is entitled to use as an MP and the Labour Party is entitled to use to further its objectives as a political party. You can opt out of communications from us or manage your preferences at any time. For more information about how we use personal data please visit: www.stephenmorgan.org.uk/privacy-policy

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Stronger rights for victims of anti-social behaviour are needed says City MP as huge increase in number of people affected over past decade revealed

Stephen Morgan MP has welcomed demands for stronger rights for victims of anti-social behaviour as analysis reveals a huge increase in number of people affected over the past decade

New analysis by Labour reveals that two fifths of Crime Survey (CSEW) respondents said they had experienced anti-social behaviour (ASB) in their local area in the past year – the highest since questions on ASB were included in the CSEW.

This is equivalent to 19m people experiencing some form of ASB in 2019-20, up by 1m in a year and 5.5m more than 2011-12.

Every area in England and Wales has seen an increase in the number of people experiencing ASB over the past five years.

Stephen Morgan MP, Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, added:

“We are living through a victims crisis. Over a quarter of all crimes aren’t being prosecuted because victims are dropping out of the process entirely. That means that 1 million victims every year are being failed by the very system designed to protect them. 

I know from my postbag the impact anti-social behaviour is having on our communities. That is why I continue to take action to tackle the issues we face in Portsmouth working alongside the police and other agencies. But it is vital that Government plays their part too and ensures fairer funding for Hampshire Constabulary and delivers investment in preventative services in our city.

 I welcome Labour’s Victims Law that’s ready to go to help those affected by anti-social behaviour.

It makes victims unignorable in a system that increasingly overlooks their needs. Now it’s up to the Government to put politics aside and implement it without delay.” 

Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, said:

“The shocking rise in the number of people experiencing anti-social behaviour is a huge cause of concern for families and communities across the country.

“People deserve to feel safe and secure in their neighbourhoods and town centres, but under the Conservatives police numbers have been slashed, violent crime has risen to record levels, and anti-social behaviour has been left unchecked.

“Labour will work to put more police on our streets and would act where the Conservatives have failed and introduce a new Victims’ Law that would give victims of anti-social behaviour the same rights as victims of crimes.”