Boris Johnson confronted over Hampstead ‘fund your own police officers’ proposal
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Mayor of London Boris Johnson was put on the spot at City Hall over proposals by Hampstead residents to crowdfund their own police officers, a move being considered in light of cuts to Safer Neighbourhood Teams.
Andrew Dismore, London Assembly member for Barnet and Camden, raised the issue during Mayor’s Question Time on Wednesday, referring to the Ham&High’s coverage of the issue.
He asked Mr Johnson whether he agreed with the Camden Borough Commander that the plans would not set a good precedent, or with Zac Goldsmith, who said he has no objections to the idea.
The Mayor was caught napping and had to admit he had never heard of the proposals.
He told Mr Dismore: “You have the advantage of much closer study of the Ham&High than I do.
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“I’ve no knowledge of the idea. I’m not instinctively attracted to it, but let’s study it. What I want to see is proper funding for the police.”
Mr Dismore pushed the Mayor for an answer, telling him: “You’re sitting on the fence and trying to dodge the question.”
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Afterwards, Mr Dismore said Mr Johnson’s “ducking and diving” response was “woefully inadequate”.
He said the Mayor’s statement that crime was falling, in the face of frequent newspaper reports of violent crimes and burglaries in the Hampstead area, “shows how out of touch he is”.