WEST Midlands police and crime commissioner has applied to the Home Office for an extra £9 million, so officers can better tackle sex crimes and support for victims can be improved.
PCC Simon Foster has made the ‘Special Grant’ application to the government, as part of action to better investigate sexual offences and help those affected by the crimes.
The money, which would be spent over a three-year period, would be used to recruit a new team, including extra police officers, forensic staff and specialists in victim care.
The number of sexual offences reported to West Midlands Police rose by 60 per cent from the middle of 2021 to the same period in 2022.
This new money would help reduce the number of cases each police officer is handling, so each case can be guaranteed more officer time.
It is hoped this would lead to better outcomes for victims in the courts.
Nationally only 5 per cent of reported rapes lead to a charge and the PCC is determined to do more in our region to bring offenders to justice.
PCC Simon Foster said: “Following years of reckless government cuts to West Midlands Police, which forced it to shrink it’s number of police officers by a quarter since 2010, we are currently letting down countless rape and other sexual offence victims.
“The thin blue line has been squeezed and squeezed and as a result, there are too few officers to bring offenders of sex crimes to justice.
“This £9 million application will make a huge difference.”