EMCC European Monitoring Centre on Change

West Mercia Police Authority

Company/Organisation:
West Mercia Police Authority

Geographic Location

Country: United Kingdom
Region: West Midlands

Company

Sector: Public administration and defence
Public administration and defence; compulsory social security
84.24 - Public order and safety activities

Employment Effects

Announcement Date: 13-06-2006
Planned Job Reductions min: 2000
Planned Job Reductions max: 2000
Type of Restructuring: Internal restructuring

Additional Information

The Home Office wants fewer, larger forces in England and Wales to tackle serious and organised crime more effectively. Legal challenges against the proposals have been made by West Mercia and Cleveland Police Authorities and Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley and Solihull councils. The chairman of West Mercia Police Authority claims a merged force could result in the loss of 2,000 jobs. Council tax payers in the West Midlands force area pay less towards police than those in the West Mercia, Staffordshire and Warwickshire forces. The West Mercia Police Authority's treasurer Mike Weaver said the government's promise that council taxpayers would not have to pay more for a merged force would leave a shortfall of £220m. In a statement, the Home Office said it is working to resolve the issue of how much council tax would be given over to a merged super-force. Currently each council gives separate amounts of funding to their individual police forces and no decision has been made on exact funding levels. The three chief constables of Staffordshire, Warwickshire and West Midlands police forces also condemned West Mercia's viewpoint saying the conclusions were hypothetical and could undermine the confidence of the current workforce.