Hampshire Constabulary’s staffing cut by nearly a quarter, says UNISON

Concerns raised that cuts have hampered the ability of the force to combat serious and violent crime

New research from UNISON, the UK’s largest trade union, shows a 22% cut in Hampshire Constabulary’s workforce over the past decade.

According to analysis of data provided by the Home Office, there are around 1,400 fewer police and police staff in Hampshire today than in 2010.

The union, which represents police staff across the country, says there are now 15% fewer police staff, 38% fewer police community support officers (PCSOs) and 25% fewer police officers compared to the levels a decade ago.

Despite some suggestions from the government that police officer numbers will be increased, there is no commitment to rebuild the police staff workforce, who are vital to forces like Hampshire Constabulary, says UNISON. Police staff include 999 call-takers, crime scene examiners, fingerprint experts, PCSOs, crime scene analysts, cyber-crime specialists, trainers and detention officers.

UNISON South East regional organiser James Smith said: “UNISON has been campaigning for many years to reverse the damaging government cuts to policing over the past decade.

“In Hampshire these cuts have been profound and have severely hampered the ability of the force to combat serious and violent crime.

“Adding new police officers alone is not the answer; officers are just one part of the policing team. Recruiting and training new police staff is also essential to fight crime and keep communities safe.

“After a decade of cuts, UNISON is calling for the rebuilding of the entire police workforce, not just part of it.”

Notes to editors:

– UNISON is one of the largest trade unions in the police and the justice system, with more than 50,000 members working in policing and probation services and is the largest union in the UK with over 1.3 million members.
– The national police workforce is made up of 60% police officers and 40% police staff, which includes PCSOs. Police staff undertake vital work, including as 999 call-takers, crime scene examiners, fingerprint experts, crime analysts, cyber-crime specialists, trainers, detention officers and many more.
– UNISON analysis is based on comparisons sourced from Home Office Police Workforce data in England and Wales for March 2010 and September 2020
– Analysis of this data for Hampshire Constabulary demonstrates an overall 22% reduction in staff numbers over the past decade:

March 2010 September 2020
Police Staff (excluding PCSOs) 2,271 1,926
PCSOs 347 214
Police Officers 3,748 2,812
Total 6,366 4,952

Media contacts:

James Smith M: 07944 171579 E: j.smith@unison.co.uk