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Headcount of Police Officers (3302/20)

Request

I am writing to you under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to request the following information from West Midlands Police:

The number of police officers for West Midlands Police from January 1st 2009 to December 31st 2019 broken down by

  • Year
  • Number per borough
  • Number per ward

Response

Please be advised that we do not hold numbers by ward as Neighbourhood teams do not follow ward boundaries. Neighbourhood Teams have changed significantly over the requested time period, therefore, we have allocated the teams against parliamentary constituencies (where possible) so that there is a breakdown that is comparable to an area. In the attached document we have provided data based on individuals that hold the job title of Neighbourhood Policing Officer etc, rather than actually assigned to the areas, because LPUs (and OCUs prior to 2010) had additional resources that are now aligned centrally (e.g. Force Response / Force CID / Force Contact / PPU etc).

Please note we are aware of issues within the data (particularly with regard to the reductions around 2011 & 2012) – approximately 500 neighbourhood roles were re-categorised / rebranded as Local Priority Teams etc. In addition, there was a Continuous Improvement review of Neighbourhood Policing which implemented changes and therefore required reduced numbers.

Therefore, the detail collected to respond specifically to your request is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when interpreting those data.

If you decide to write an article / use the enclosed data we would ask you to take into consideration the factors highlighted in this document so as to not mislead members of the public or official bodies, or misrepresent the relevance of the whole or any part of this disclosed material.

Attachments

3302_ATTACHMENT