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Lib Dems reveal police stations to lose 6,128 public hours each week

October 16, 2013 10:46 AM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrats have continued to put pressure on Police Scotland to hold a full public consultation on proposals to close 70 police stations to the public and dramatically reduce opening hours at many more stations.

This comes as figures calculated by the Scottish Liberal Democrat show that 6,128 hours will be lost in police plans to reduce station opening hours to the public. A review of the individual plans put forward by Police Scotland show 1290 hours will be lost across Greater Glasgow, with three local stations closing their doors to the public completely. 15 out of 17 stations in Greater Glasgow which previously operated a 24 hour service will now see dramatically reduced opening hours.

A motion put forward in the Scottish Parliament by Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Alison McInnes has already received support from Liberal Democrats, Conservative and Labour MSPs.

Ms McInnes has said that if it the closures are an operational matter for the police, SNP MSPs should be free to defend their local police stations.

Commenting, Ms McInnes said:

"The big picture is shocking. 70 police stations closing their doors to the public and many more are reducing their opening hours. In total, there will be a reduction of 6,128 hours each week across Scotland.

"Communities across Greater Glasgow will see 1290 hours lost each and every week in police counter opening hours. 15 out of 17 stations which previously operated a 24 hour service will see dramatically reduced opening hours.

"These numbers make the case for a full public consultation on these closures. I've put a motion forward in parliament calling for a full consultation which has already received support from Labour and Conservative members.

"Alex Salmond tried to wash his hands of the closures caused by his government's centralisation plans. The First Minister said it was an operational matter for the police. If that is the case then SNP backbenchers should defend their local police stations and sign my motion calling for communities across Scotland to be given a formal hearing.

"The SNP are dismantling local services in communities across Scotland in favour of their centralisation agenda. Courts have been closed, fire and police control centres are under threat and now police stations across the country will close to the public. It's becoming clearer by the day that the SNP have the wrong priorities for Scotland. Communities across Scotland deserve a government which will defend local services."