Police authority approves dog cuts
Police dog cuts to save £1.1 million were approved by Bedfordshire Police Authority at a meeting on August 31.
It’s part of the plan for a joint police dogs unit shared by Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire, and all three forces must approve the proposals for it to go ahead.
The joint dog unit would see the number of general purpose dogs (GPDs) reduced from 43 to 24, and officers cut from 48 to 24. GPDs respond to spontaneous incidents, and there are also 28 specialist search dogs that respond to incidents involving drugs, firearms, currency and explosives.
The specialist search dogs would be outsourced under the new proposals, an arrangement which is used by Northamptonshire and Thames Valley Police and has proved to be successful.
Cambridgeshire Police Authority will consider the business case in September when the final decision will be made.
Peter Conniff, Chairman of Bedfordshire Police Authority said: “The Strategic Alliance between the three police forces and authorities is helping to protect frontline policing and deliver vital savings as each force addresses their 20 per cent reduction in Government grant funding.”
A Police Authority spokesperson said if agreed, the plan would be implemented in close consultation with force dog handlers, for whom the welfare of their dogs will always be of paramount importance. This will all be taken into account in delivering a collaborated dog unit function that continues to help deliver core functions and essential roles.”
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