From today the Conservative-led government's website www.police.uk will make available data maps that show crime and anti-social behaviour at a street by street level in every neighbourhood.
This means anyone can see exactly what crime is happening and where - right down to the level of their street corner. By providing crime data in a format that anyone can access, even from a mobile, local communities will be able to hold their police to account.
The interactive maps open the door on crime and police information. Crimes including burglary, violence and anti-social behaviour in a particular area can be viewed by using a simple postcode search. There will also be details about the neighbourhood policing team and information about regular beat meetings.
Under Labour the police were directed by Whitehall diktat. The police spent their time chasing centrally-defined targets and not responding to the needs of the local communities they were supposed to be serving.
A recent report by the police inspectorate showed that only 11% of police officers were visible and available to the general public at any one time.
The Conservative-led coalition government is introducing a series of measures as part of their plan to fight crime:
- Slashing bureaucracy - steps already taken to save up to 800,000 hours of police time by scrapping the stop form and limiting stop and search reporting.
- Removing all targets and setting the police just one goal: to cut crime.
- Introducing directly-elected Police and Crime Commissioners to ensure that police forces respond to the needs of local communities
- Providing transparent information so local communities really know about crime in their area.
The Home Secretary Theresa May said:
"We want people to be able to see what crime is happening on their street and to be able to tell their local police if they have concerns, and challenge them about how issues are being dealt with.
And she added, "From today, this new information will allow them to do just that. This is a major achievement, reconnecting the police and communities through the power of information."
Find out more at www.police.uk.