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Labour announces police review

An independent review to create a "serious vision" of the future of the police service has been announced by Labour.

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said the review, chaired by former Metropolitan Police commissioner Lord Stevens, would be "vigorous and challenging" on the changes needed to create forces fit to fight crime in the 21st century.

Proclaiming Labour as the party of law and order, she repeated Tony Blair's promise to be "tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime" as she tore into the Government's police cuts in her keynote speech at her party's conference in Liverpool.

Announcing the review, she said the Government had refused to listen to police officers who had called for a royal commission into policing.

She said: "What the Police Federation and the Superintendents Association has called for is right. Now is the time for a serious vision for the future of policing, a royal commission or a heavyweight independent review.

"The Government has refused to do so, so we will. We are setting up an independent review to look at the crime challenges of the 21st century and how policing needs to adapt and respond. Building on the best of British and international policing, vigorous and challenging on the changes that are needed, but working with the police, not trying to undermine them."

In a speech which won her a standing ovation, Ms Cooper told delegates: "The Tories claim to be the party of law and order but look at the facts: every Tory government since records began has seen crime go up, not down.

"Tories in government do not cut crime. In the end, they just don't believe in the things you need to do, they don't believe in active government, they don't believe in strengthening society."

Under Labour crime fell, she said, adding: "Tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime, strong powers, strong safeguards, strong prevention and backing the police: Labour is the party of law and order and that is how we will stay."

But she admitted Labour had been wrong to press for 90-day detention without charge for terror suspects and the party should have done more on immigration.


From Belfast Telegraph