WEST Midlands Police have more bobbies on the beat after recruiting 45 new neighbourhood officers.
The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and Chief Constable announced the news, adding they would be deployed to communities across the region.
The latest recruitment round brings the tally of new neighbourhood officers to 256 officers.
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster pledged to boost neighbourhood policing numbers by 450 during his term in office in the run up to his election as part of plans to improve safety and security in the region by rebuilding community policing.
He said: “Neighbourhood policing teams are at the heart of their communities, working with local people to prevent and tackle the problems that matter most to them.
“That is why I am so pleased to announce that we have 45 new neighbourhood officers on the beat in our region, bringing the total of additional neighbourhood officers recruited on my watch to 256.
“We are rebuilding community policing.
“We know we need preventative, proactive, problem solving and visible community policing out on the streets to keep people safe and secure.
“Neighbourhood officers develop a deep understanding of the issues that can affect people’s day to day lives, so that they can effectively prevent and tackle crime.”
West Midlands Police was forced to shrink by more than 2,000 officers since 2010 following government funding cuts.
West Midlands Police Chief Constable, Craig Guildford, said he was a firm believer in neighbourhood policing and was working hard to increase the number of dedicated officers working locally in communities across the region.
“I am pleased to welcome these 45 new neighbourhood officers ahead of the introduction of a new local policing model in April.
“People can expect us to be more visible in their communities and this will help us to get better at tackling the things that they tell us matter to them.”
He added it would also help the force work more effectively with its partners, local businesses and other agencies to reduce crime and disorder and make the streets safer.