Labour Shadow Home Secretary insists more must be done to tackle crime in Hartlepool
Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary has called for more to be done in Hartlepool to tackle the “grim consequences” of crime and anti-social behaviour in the town.
Nick Thomas-Symonds MP joined Dr Paul Williams the Labour Parliamentary by-election candidate in Hartlepool, on April 27 to meet residents in the De Bruce ward and discuss the impact of crime and anti-social behaviour.
Mr Thomas-Symonds said more needs to be done to tackle the issues in the area.
But he insisted Labour they have an “excellent candidate” in Hartlepool who can make a difference.
He said: “What I’ve heard about are behaviours that are frankly making people’s lives a misery and there is not at the moment enough being done to tackle that.
“I’ve seen the grim consequences of the cuts to preventative services and youth services and also to police officer numbers.”
It has previously been reported that Cleveland Police have lost more than 500 police officers since 2010 and Mr Thomas-Symonds, along with Dr Williams, joined calls to bring more police back to the area.
Dr Williams also said, if elected, he wants to set up an anti-social behaviour task force in Hartlepool, adding: “Victims have to come first and as the local MP I will make sure that I put the victims at the centre of everything I do.
“The impact that anti-social behaviour has on people makes me really, really determined to take a strong lead.”
He also stressed the importance of investing in young people and giving them opportunities to take part in different activities in their free time.
He said: “On every doorstep people say there used to be so many different youth clubs and sports and other associations.
“But cuts to the local authority has meant that they’ve all been scaled back.”
Ahead of the by-election, Dr Williams said he is “not taking anything for granted” and will continue to work to gain the support of residents.
He said: “Apart from a couple of shifts that I’m doing in the NHS over the course of the next 10 days, I’m going to be spending all day, every day listening to and talking with voters in Hartlepool.”
Mr Thomas-Symonds added he was “very confident” in Dr Williams but knows Labour “still has a great deal to do to win trust back” nationally.