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Business response to Mayoral candidates’ crime announcements

Leading business organisation London First today welcomed announcements on crime and policing from two of the mayoral candidates. Conservative candidate Boris Johnson released his 35-page crime manifesto, while Mayor Ken Livingstone committed to resourcing an extra 1,000 police officers.

Executive Director for Security and Policing Richard Bingley said:

“Regardless of arguments around crime statistics, fear and anxiety relating to crime is higher in London than in most international cities. Also, recorded violent crime has risen slightly and there is evidence that residents and businesses have become less inclined to report crime. We welcome practical ideas to achieve more visible policing and increased weapons scanning, especially on our buses and trains. Promoting and examining measures to ‘design out’ vulnerability to crime and terrorism for London’s new buildings, and building preparedness against emergencies including terrorism are also important commitments.

“The Mayor’s record of delivering 5,000 more police officers and over 4,000 Community Support Officers has helped to boost the visibility of the service. The additional numbers announced today will support this and are welcomed.

“Business will expect whoever is Mayor after May 1st to deliver and publicise practical initiatives which increase police visibility and deterrence, especially across public transport, to make our city safer and make it feel safer.”

In London First’s 2007 Consultation with Business on Crime and Policing, fear of terrorism, burglary, public transport safety and anti-social behaviour were the greatest concerns for London’s leading employers. Moreover, yesterday’s release of the GLA’s Annual London Survey showed that 55% of Londoners want to see more police foot patrols and that 45% said that crime in London was one of the ‘worst things’ about living in the capital.

London First members represent a quarter of the capital’s GDP.

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