Sussex needs ‘more bobbies on the beat’ according to UKIP’s PCC candidate who is hoping to unseat Tory incumbent Katy Bourne in May.
Patrick Lowe, who lives in Brighton and runs his own photocopier business supplying retail outlets, switched from the Conservatives last year and actually worked on Mrs Bourne’s successful campaign to become the county’s first Police and Crime Commissioner in 2012.
If elected he promised to put more bobbies on the beat, to champion the area for more resources, and become a ‘bureaucracy buster’.
He said: “The message I want to get out today is the public want the police back on the streets. Get the bobby back on the beat, that’s what I intend to deliver.”
He argued the force was overreliant on Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs), a role which is currently the subject of a review, and that in the past preventative work and strong community relationships was one of Sussex Police’s strengths.
Mr Lowe called for a shift from a strategy reliant on switchboards manned by individuals ‘under a lot of pressure’.
He added: “Every crime committed needs to be followed up. It’s dangerous to accept that certain crimes are not that important and certain crimes are.”
He continued: “For the victim a burglary is a most horrendous experience and invasion of someone’s personal space and in many cases life long personal effects with a lot of sentimental value gets removed and it’s soul destroying.”
He said it was ‘disappointing’ that Mrs Bourne had not fought harder for better funding for Sussex from central Government, and opposed the merge of Sussex Police with any other force.
Mr Lowe said: “I’m a builder, I’m not a liquidator and we do not want a liquidation. We want a police force, we want a PCC that will build the police, be their champion, improve the morale, and give the public value for the taxes that they pay.”
He thought that by ‘busting the bureaucracy’ they could get more ‘police officers back into the community’.
He explained that he had made the switch of parties as the values of the current Government ‘do not resonate with what I believe in’.
He also felt they were not giving enough support to small businesses, and said that UKIP was the only party that allowed its members to listen and ‘truly respond to the people’.
He continued: “During my campaign I will be listening to what residents want rather than the recent experience of having a yes or no survey.”
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