NORTH KENSINGTON COUNCILLORS SUPPORT MET POLICE IN BATTLE TO PROTECT RESIDENTS FROM NOISYAND UNSAFE STREET PARTIES WHILE GOVERNMENT CUTS TO THE MAYOR’S AND POLICE BUDGETS PUT US ALL AT RISK.
The ongoing daily illegal street gatherings across London and North Kensington – often accompanied by loud sound systems – has vividly demonstrated the severe damage years of government cuts has done to the Police’s ability to attend and close down all such events often numbering hundreds of people, many inebriated.
Between 2015, when Boris Johnson was London mayor, and 2021, the Metropolitan Police budget will have suffered a £1.4 billion cut from Coalition and Conservative governments, and a further £110million reduction due to Covid-19 costs ministers are refusing to refund that will hit London and K&C officer numbers. Between 2010 and 2019 UK police funding fell by 30% reducing police numbers by 23,000.
In the past weeks multiple illegal streets events have taken place on North Kensington’s streets and estates until 2am and later, often concentrated along the Portobello and Golborne Road Market area. They breach social distancing rules and loud music booms out for many hours disrupting the lives of residents and their familiesand attracting drug dealing and serious violence. The majority of crowds, sometimes hundreds strong, do not live here and leave behind mountains of rubbish and are working against the recovery of our markets and local economy.
North Kensington, Colville Ward Cllr Monica Press said:
“On the Portobello Road we’ve not been able to sleep for three nights. The local and London Met Police are doing the best they can but given the cuts and their limited resources plus the number of incident across North Kensington on Friday night, they weren’t able to provide the level of policing residents required in Portobello Road and eventually after midnight the Territorial Support Group were brought in to disperse the 300 strong crowd. Local pubs and supermarkets must take some responsibility as we witnessed no attempt to reduce alcohol sales, close early or disperse the crowds from the few premises open”
RBKC Labour Group Leader Cllr Pat Mason said:
“Shame on the government for playing political football with Sadiq’s Policing, Fire and public transport budgets during the Codiv-19 pandemic. Starving the GLA of cash is blatant interference in the mayoral election and hurts the most vulnerable people in North Kensington and the Borough. If the PM can afford a £1.3 trillion banks bail out in recent weeks then he can afford to properly fund the police when they are working to protect our communities”.
For further information contact: Cllr Pat Mason: 07496 538 101