Police warn investigations will suffer if next year’s budget cuts go through
The police have warned of tremendous impacts if the government’s wide-ranging budget cuts go ahead. The current plan calls for a cutting a four-billion crown slice from the police budget in 2013 and an additional two and a half billion the year after that. According to an internal police risk assessment, reported on this week by the daily Právo, those cuts in practical terms will mean closing a quarter of the country’s police stations and laying off a corresponding amount of the force, some 10,000 police officers. The report warns that that would leave the police unable to properly fulfil one of their main tasks – investigations.
“I think it’s a valid concern on the part of the police, because even now, before the cuts, the police are not able to investigate as much as they would like, and when they say that they will be undermanned and will not be properly financed, then they will have more of a problem carrying out investigations and thereby protecting the people.”
The police force has had to deal with major cuts in its history before, is there no where else the money could come from other than drastically reducing the number of officers and stations?
Judging by the mood in society at the moment and the government’s track record so far, what are the chances in your opinion that such drastic cuts will in the end be made?
“I don’t believe that the minister of the interior has the political strength to influence it. There may be some small amount of money that can be saved, but I don’t believe that in the situation that we face now, and when the government is determined to make these cuts, that the interior ministry will be able to save enough money to keep better police preparedness for fighting crime on the streets of the country.”
“I believe that he will be on the side of the police, but the problem with this interior minister is that he is not a member of any political party and so he does not have the strong support of the politicians within the political system of the Czech Republic, so I don’t personally believe he has the strength to influences the cuts we are anticipating.”