Police officers becoming increasingly isolated from the communities they serve ‘by being diverted to hidden jobs’


Police officers are becoming increasingly isolated from the communities they serve, by being diverted from beat patrols to other “hidden” jobs, according to a new report.

Forces are sleepwalking towards a situation in which traditional beat bobbies spend as much time guarding crime scenes and processing prisoners as they do on street-level intelligence on criminals.

One police force that cut back on patrols – neighbourhood policing – ended the policy after it found that it led to a spike in anti-social behaviour, according to HM Inspectorate of Constabulary.

Police representatives have complained that patrols were among the first things to go during budget cuts, which saw officer numbers cut by more than 16,500 to 125,000 in the five years to 2015.