December 2012 MQT Answers

Below are the answers to written questions submitted to the Mayor by Joanne in December 2012.

Papers for MOPAC Challenge
Question No: 4189 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Do you plan to make the papers for MOPAC Challenge sessions available to the public in good time before the meeting, as is the practice of Committees of London Assembly?

Written response from the Mayor

MOPAC Challenge is not a decision making meeting. However, MOPAC intends to publicise sessions in advance and where appropriate make papers available on the website.

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Updates from MOPAC
Question No: 4190 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Why have Londoners who have signed up for email updates from MOPAC received no updates about MOPAC’s work to date? Do you expect this to change?

Written response from the Mayor

MOPAC will start to send out updates in the New Year.

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2000 Extra Constables
Question No: 4191 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

In MOPAC’s Draft Budget Proposals you outline plans for 2,000 extra constables by 2015/16. What baseline figure are you using to calculate these 2,000 extra officers?

Written response from the Mayor

The baseline figure used in our Draft Budget Proposal is 23,357 at 31 March 2013.

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2000 Extra Officers on the Front Line from the Back Office
Question No: 4192 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

During your election campaign you promised Londoners that you would take 2,000 officers out of the back office and put them out on the frontline. Will you please provide a detailed breakdown of exactly which units and roles these officers will come from across the Met and where they are likely to be redeployed to?

Written response from the Mayor

MOPAC is currently preparing a police and crime plan, an important element of which is the local policing model, which will document how this commitment is being met.

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Merging Borough Commanders
Question No: 4193 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

In your Deputy Mayor for Policing’s letter to me on 28th of November he stated “I have discussed and discounted the merging of Borough Commanders […] every borough will retain a dedicated senior police officer.” Will every borough have a senior officer of Chief Superintendent rank or above?

Written response from the Mayor

As my DMPC said his my letter to you on 28 November 2012, every borough will be led by an identified Borough Commander. The rank of Borough Commanders is not the same in every borough and is a matter for the Commissioner.

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Special Constables
Question No: 4194 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

In your 212 Election Manifesto you pledged to increase the number of Special Constables (MSCs) to 10,000, this promise is repeated in the Police and Crime Plan headline document. However, MOPAC’s budget proposals plan for numbers of Specials to remain at 6,667 through to 2015/16. Why is this?

Written response from the Mayor

The original pledge for 10,000 Special Constables was part of the delivery plan to ensure a safe and secure Olympics. It was based on Special Constables working an average of 16 hours month (the minimum requirement). In practice Special Constables have worked in excess of the 16 hours minimum this year.

To date, this year we have recruited some 525 MSCs with a further 975 scheduled to join by 31 March 2013.

I intend to keep the target number of Special Constables under regular review. I also intend to work with the MPS to increase the opportunities for the people of London to volunteer in a much wider range of roles as part of our overarching volunteer strategy.

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Public Consultations on Policing
Question No: 4195 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

What involvement have you had in directing how both public consultations on the Local Policing Model and the Estate Strategy have been conducted to date?

Written response from the Mayor

I have been very clear with the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime that I expect him to take his consultation to the widest possible audience. Throughout January and February there will be public meetings on the Local Policing Model and the Estate Strategy as it forms part of the Policing and Crime Plan consultations. The time and location of these public consultations will be published in local papers, london.gov website, some local council websites and the Evening Standard.

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Rape Crisis Funding (1)
Question No: 4196 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Will you guarantee that you will not reduce your contribution to Rape Crisis Funding in London during this Mayoral Term?

Written response from the Mayor

Yes.

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Rape Crisis Funding (2)
Question No: 4197 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

On 17th Sept your Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Stephen Greenhalgh wrote to Boroughs regarding Rape Crisis Funding. The letter stated: “These are transitional arrangements to allow MOPAC time to develop a more sustainable funding model for sexual violence service provision from 2014/15 onwards.”

What kind of funding model are you considering for Rape Crisis in London for 2014/15 onward?

Written response from the Mayor

I will ensure that MOPAC Rape Crisis funding remains consistent over the next three years.

I would also like to see all London boroughs allocating a standard, minimum level of funding for Rape Crisis provision.
In addition to this, I have asked MOPAC to pursue funding from alternative sources such as the National Health Service to create a more diverse and sustainable funding model.

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PCSO strength
Question No: 4198 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Can you please provide London’s PCSO strength by Borough for Nov 2012?

Written response from the Mayor

The table attached as Appendix 7 shows the total PCSO strength in the MPS area at the end of November 2012 broken down by borough.

The numbers provided include the Local Authority funded PCSOs.

Borough / Total
Barking & Dagenham 71.72
Barnet 94.09
Bexley 76.30
Brent 65.36
Bromley 103.73
Camden 69.61
Croydon 69.78
Ealing 84.66
Enfield 102.63
Greenwich 69.98
Hackney 63.00
Hammersmith & Fulham 62.86
Haringey 62.94
Harrow 69.61
Havering 70.63
Hillingdon 53.78
Hounslow 66.48
Islington 65.61
Kensington & Chelsea 137.43
Kingston upon Thames 43.77
Lambeth 110.50
Lewisham 68.44
Merton 62.26
Newham 70.00
Redbridge 77.26
Richmond upon Thames 54.76
Southwark 77.37
Sutton 75.16
Tower Hamlets 63.72
Waltham Forest 68.42
Wandsworth 60.95
Westminster 111.29
Borough Total 2,404.11
Non-borough 316.33
MPS Total 2,720.44

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PCSO strength
Question No: 4198 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Can you please provide London’s PCSO strength by Borough for Nov 2012?

Written answer from the Mayor

The table below shows the total PCSO strength in the MPS area at the end of November 2012 broken down by borough.

The numbers provided include the Local Authority funded PCSOs.

Borough Total
Barking & Dagenham 71.72
Barnet 94.09
Bexley 76.30
Brent 65.36
Bromley 103.73
Camden 69.61
Croydon 69.78
Ealing 84.66
Enfield 102.63
Greenwich 69.98
Hackney 63.00
Hammersmith & Fulham 62.86
Haringey 62.94
Harrow 69.61
Havering 70.63
Hillingdon 53.78
Hounslow 66.48
Islington 65.61
Kensington & Chelsea 137.43
Kingston upon Thames 43.77
Lambeth 110.50
Lewisham 68.44
Merton 62.26
Newham 70.00
Redbridge 77.26
Richmond upon Thames 54.76
Southwark 77.37
Sutton 75.16
Tower Hamlets 63.72
WalthamForest 68.42
Wandsworth 60.95
Westminster 111.29
Borough Total 2,404.11
Non-borough 316.33
MPS Total 2,720.44

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Police front counters/police stations (1)
Question No: 4199 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Can you please provide a list, broken down by London Borough, of police front counters and police stations that the MPS are proposing for closure, in order to meet your budget cuts, in the current Estate consultation process?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

As part of this review Borough Commanders have engaged with the public and its partners to explain the changes and listen to the community reaction.

Senior officers within the MPS and MOPAC are also meeting with Borough Leaders to improvements to public access in their borough and identify opportunities for co-location.

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Police front counters/police stations (2)
Question No: 4200 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Can you please provide a list, broken down by London Borough of the police front counters and stations that have been identified for a reduction or increase in hours, noting both the hours that they are currently open and the hours that are proposed for opening in the current Estate consultation process?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

As part of this review Borough Commanders have engaged with the public and its partners to explain the changes and listen to the community reaction.

Senior officers within the MPS and MOPAC are also meeting with Borough Leaders to improvements to public access in their borough and identify opportunities for co-location.

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Police front Counters/police stations (3)
Question No: 4201 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Can you please provide a list of police front counters and stations that have been proposed as the 24/7 stations that will be open to the public in each London Borough in the current Estate consultation process?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

As part of this review Borough Commanders have engaged with the public and its partners to explain the changes and listen to the community reaction.

Senior officers within the MPS and MOPAC are also meeting with Borough Leaders to discuss improvements to public access in their borough and identify opportunities for co-location.

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Police Recruits
Question No: 4202 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

How many police recruits were in the Met’s intake in November 2012?

Written response from the Mayor

147 were recruited in October and commenced their training in November 2012.

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Diplomatic Protection
Question No: 4203 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

What veracity is there in the claim that you are advocating for the Metropolitan Police to be stripped of it’s duties to provide diplomatic protection across the UK?

Written response from the Mayor

Please see my response to Oral MQ 3945/ 2012.

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Announcements on Piccadilly Line trains (1)
Question No: 4204 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

A constituent has contacted me regarding over-loud announcements made by the PA systems on the Piccadilly Line trains. The constituent has already written into TfL who have acknowledged that in general the messages are broadcast at a set volume, but that there are sometimes failures. As these failures appear to be frequent on the Piccadilly Line, could you please investigate these failures and inform me what remedial action will be taken?

Written response from the Mayor

The volume of the automated announcements on board Piccadilly line trains, as on all Tube lines, is set at a level so as to be audible above the volume of moving trains and general background noise. A sensor in each car detects any rise in the volume on board the train and adjusts the volume of the audio system accordingly.

TfL regularly inspects and tests the audio system in every carriage to ensure the system is in full working order and the volume levels are set correctly.

While failures of the PA system on Piccadilly line trains are rare, with over 500 carriages in the total fleet, there will be occasions when minor faults occur while in service or between inspections causing fluctuations in the volume of announcements.  If customers find themselves on board a train with a problem with the PA system they should note down the number of that carriage (which can be found above the inter-connecting door at the end of each car) and report it to TfL so that it can be investigated and any necessary repairs or adjustments can be undertaken at the earliest opportunity.

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Announcements on Piccadilly Line trains (2)
Question No: 4205 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

How many failures of the PA system have there been on the Piccadilly Line since January 2012?

Written response from the Mayor

To ensure customer safety no train will enter into, nor remain in service if the public address (PA) system has failed to the extent that announcements cannot be heard. Since January this year there have been seven incidents on the Piccadilly line where PA failure has caused a train to be withdrawn from service.

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Disruption to the TfL network
Question No: 4206 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

A constituent has written in to express her distress and frustration over the lack of organisation when travelling home from Victoria station to Muswell Hill on the 20th October 2012. Despite planning in advance knowing that there was going to be disruptions, she was informed by TfL by telephone on the 20th October to get the 73 bus to Golders Green after 11am. When my constituent arrived, the 73 was not running and when she asked police officers and stewards in high visibility jackets she was directed to get the 24 bus from the bus stop along Victoria Street opposite Westminster Cathedral, which was too full to let passengers on. Can you tell me:

(a) How much information and training is given to staff when there will be known disruptions to the network?

(b) Do you think TfL planned alternative routes to a satisfactory standard on 20th October 2012?

Written response from the Mayor

I’m disappointed to hear of the difficulties your constituent faced on 20th October when a TUC march brought disruption to part of central London, including Victoria.

Her bus pass or bus ticket would have been valid on the underground around this time and that might have been her best option for getting to Muswell Hill unless she preferred to travel overland.

Buses on route 73 were diverted around Victoria, but at the time she telephoned for advice that alteration might not have been in place. If she wanted to travel by bus, then route 24 would have taken her towards Tottenham Court Road where she could have changed for Muswell Hill but some services would have been more busy than usual due to displaced passengers.

TfL adopts an integrated approach to providing travel information to the public. Operational staff receive the most up-to-date information on disruption and changes to bus routes, and these are forwarded as soon as diversions are confirmed.

I am satisfied that the diversions in place that day were necessary and worked effectively to keep London moving, and that the general public were assisted by the extra operational staff deployed.

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Overnight Roadworks
Question No: 4207 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

My constituents in Enfield have experienced disturbance by overnight roadworks on Southbury/Great Cambridge Road on 22nd October 2012. Can you tell me what advance warnings and information was provided to affected residents?

Written response from the Mayor

The works at this location on the night of 22 October were to replace a small number of drainage gully gratings and inspection covers. The works are part of the final stage of the carriageway renewal that was carried out much earlier in the year, for which advance warning and information about the main works was provided at the time.

The process controlling highway works carried out by all highways contractors and statutory undertakers within Greater London does not require works of short duration, such as those on the 22 October, to be notified by specific publicity. However, details were published on the TfL website at http://public.londonworks.gov.uk/roadworks/home, and were arranged to cause minimal disruption to traffic, taking into account the location, and effect on residents.

There will be one further night of finishing works to install a specially sourced large inspection cover, which is currently planned to take place on or before 23December.

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Dial-a-Ride
Question No: 4208 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

My constituents are having difficulty in accessing Dial-a-Ride and making regular bookings due to the lack of capacity. This service is important as it prevents isolation those less able to use public transport. What action are you taking to increase capacity for those who rely on Dial-a-Ride for regular activities?

Written response from the Mayor

I fully recognise the importance that the Dial-a-Ride service has in the lives of older and disabled Londoners who rely on it to enable them to live independent lives, particularly in respect of regular bookings which are used for shopping and other social activities.

I am pleased to be able to reassure you that Dial-a-Ride is taking measures to help customers identify ‘off peak’ times, when they are more likely to be able to successful in a request for a regular booking arrangement, and to increase available capacity for regular bookings by reducing the number of empty seats on buses that represent last minute cancellations and booking suspensions made by passengers themselves.

Unfortunately due to the popularity of the service, demand for regular booking arrangements with Dial-a-Ride often outstrips available resources at the most popular times of day, which usually relate to the common start and finish times of many organised social activities such as luncheon clubs.

Dial-a-Ride makes efforts to communicate these service limitations to organisers of activities and hold regular briefing sessions with such organisers to discuss issues they may be experiencing with accessing journeys for participants of their activities. One of the key messages given to organisers during these sessions, and through direct mailing communications is that Dial-a-Ride can offer advice on how to best co-ordinate the start and finish times of activities, where this is possible, so that those wishing to attend can be accommodated at the times when Dial-a-Ride does have the capacity to provide them with a regular booking arrangement.

Dial-a-Ride also offers advice in relation to individual, rather than group oriented requests for regular arrangements.  If Dial-a-Ride is unable accommodate the exact times initially requested, they now contact applicants to offer them alternative times where capacity does exist. This is a particularly successful strategy where activities are not time critical, such as regular shopping trips.

Dial-a-Ride is focussing considerable efforts on making more efficient use of the capacity that it has by reducing the number of empty seats of buses created by passengers’ late cancellation of bookings, through a campaign of customer awareness about the effects of such late cancellations. In cases where passengers request regular bookings be de-activated for a period before being reinstated, Dial-a-Ride is consulting through its Local Area Meetings about placing a time limit on how long these can be put on hold. This would make it easier to reallocate capacity held free for passengers not currently travelling to others who are waiting for vacancies in schedules.

Although these initiatives are expected to make some improvements to Dial-a-Ride’s ability to accommodate regular booking requests, it must also be borne in mind that there will always be some regular journeys that Dial-a-Ride will not be able to accommodate as its resources are necessarily finite.

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Travel Concession for Police Officers
Question No: 4209 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Can you please detail the annual cost of travel concessions for serving MPS personnel for the past 3 years, and projected cost for the forthcoming 3 years?

Written response from the Mayor

TfL does not consider there is a cost associated with this concession, which provides a welcome additional security measure for users of TfL services.

TfL does not keep records of the trips made by officers who travel by showing their warrant cards to station staff.  No forecasts for future years are made.

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MPS Alternative Front Counter Provision – Southgate Police Station
Question No: 4210 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Does your plan to close Southgate Police Station (which currently offers front counter provision for 60 hours per week) and replace it with 4 hours per week at the nearby Asda supermarket fulfil your promise that any replacement would be of equivalent or better quality, and be for at least the same number of hours? Will you please reconsider this proposition?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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MPS Alternative Front Counter Provision – Winchmore Hill Police Station
Question No: 4211 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Does your plan to close Winchmore Hill Police Station (which currently offers front counter provision for 12 hours per week) and replace it with 4 hours per week at the Morrisons supermarket in Palmers Green fulfil your promise that any replacement would be of equivalent or better quality, and be for at least the same number of hours? Will you please reconsider this proposition?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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MPS Alternative Front Counter Provision – Muswell Hill Police Station
Question No: 4212 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

You plan to close Winchmore Hill Police Station (which currently offers front counter provision for 12 hours per week). Previously we have been promised that if this station were to close an alternative site closer to the Broadway would be found. What alternative site are you proposing, and for what hours are you planning to open this new site? Will it fulfil your promise that any replacement would be of equivalent or better quality, and be for at least the same number of hours?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Hornsey Police Station
Question No: 4213 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Will your plan to reduce drastically the front counter hours at Hornsey Police Station (from 24 hours 7 days per week) meet the need of Hornsey/Haringey residents? Will you please reconsider this proposition?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. This will involve examining the opening hours of all front counters. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Tottenham Police Station – cutting night-time front counter cover
Question No: 4214 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Why on earth are you proposing cutting the night-time front counter cover at Tottenham Police Station?

Written response from the Mayor

I have committed to Tottenham having a front counter.

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. This will include a review of opening hours of all front counters.

No decisions on public access including opening hours will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Police Front Counter Provision 24/7
Question No: 4215 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Do you recognise that there are some areas of London where a standard one 24/7 police front counter per Borough will not meet the needs of that Borough, and that two such facilities may be required?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Police Front Counter Provision – Equality Impact Assessments
Question No: 4216 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

What Equality Impact Assessment has MOPAC and/or the MPS made in deciding where to reduce or remove police front counter provision? Please can these be provided?

Written response from the Mayor

The MPS is conducting an overarching Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) on the front counter proposals and is supporting this through further EIAs at a borough level to establish the potential impact on local communities and identify any required mitigation. These assessments are on-going and are being updated as the front counter proposals develop.

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Enfield Town Police Station
Question No: 4217 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

Will your plan to reduce drastically the front counter hours at Enfield Town Police Station (from 24 hours 7 days per week to 40 hours over 5 days per week) meet the need of Enfield residents? Will you please reconsider this proposition?

Written response from the Mayor

No decisions on public access have yet been made.

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Enfield Safer Neighbourhood Bases
Question No: 4218 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

What plans do you have in respect of maintaining Enfield’s police safer neighbourhood bases? Are you planning to close any as part of, or following, your police station/front counter review?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Haringey Safer Neighbourhood Bases
Question No: 4219 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

What plans do you have in respect of maintaining Haringey’s police safer neighbourhood bases? Are you planning to close any as part of, or following, your police station/front counter review?

Written response from the Mayor

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) are in the process of developing the strategy to improve public access to the police. Once complete it will be put before the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime for approval.

The strategy, once approved will support the Police and Crime Plan.

No decisions on public access will be made until the strategy is approved by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.

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Fire Station Cuts in Haringey
Question No: 4220 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

I was very alarmed at possible options in a recent LFEPA document that the closure of Tottenham fire station is being considered, which would lead to an unacceptably increased response time for residents in Haringey. Please can you guarantee that no fire stations/appliances will be cut in Enfield & Haringey? Please can you guarantee that in any re-organisation the emergency response of the London Fire Brigade will not suffer, but will improve, to my constituents in Haringey?

Written response from the Mayor

Please see my response to MQ 3732/ 2012.

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Fire Station Cuts in Enfield
Question No: 4221 / 2012
Joanne McCartney

I was very alarmed at possible options in a recent LFEPA document that the closure of Tottenham fire station is being considered, which would lead to an increased response time for residents in Enfield who already have one of the poorest response times in London. Please can you guarantee that no fire stations/appliances will be cut in Enfield & Haringey? Please can you guarantee that in any re-organisation the emergency response of the London Fire Brigade will not suffer, but will improve, to my constituents in Enfield?

Written response from the Mayor

Please see my response to MQ 3732/ 2012.

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