So much has happened this year, with so many achievements, by so many, that listing them all would be an impossible task. But there are just a few I’d like to mention.
When I was elected by you as PCC, I pledged an extra 450 neighbourhood officers. This followed years of reckless government cuts. These officers are based in local communities in our region. They get to know the people who live and work there and understand their concerns, which makes them exceptionally good at preventing and tackling crime.
I’m pleased to say that, as I write this, there are already 211 additional neighbourhood officers walking the beat in the West Midlands. There are dozens more, about to be confirmed in the weeks ahead and it is my intention, that Solihull will have its fair share of these additional officers. As ever, I will be sharing the news with the Solihull Observer as soon as I can.
I’ve also recruited a new Chief Constable, Craig Guildford, who has been brought in to work with me to prevent and tackle crime, in order to keep people, their families and local communities safe and secure. I will be holding the Chief Constable to account, to ensure West Midlands Police provide the people of the West Midlands, with the police service they need and are entitled to.
2022 was also a year when I pledged West Midlands Police would step up and play its part, in building a sustainable environment, by aiming to turn net zero by 2035. As part of that strategy, you can expect to see more electric police cars on our roads and solar panels on police buildings in the coming months and in the years ahead.
We shouldn’t forget the monumental achievement that was the Commonwealth Games with the NEC at its heart. It was the largest policing operation in the history of West Midlands Police. We could all focus on the sporting action, precisely because our police officers professionally carried out their vital duty of keeping us and visitors to our region, safe and secure. We are all grateful to each and every single one of them, for all that they did for us.
The year 2022, has been an exceptionally busy year, with many challenges, but many achievements too. There is so much more to do in 2023. I am not remotely complacent and nor do I underestimate the scale of the challenges ahead. Please rest assured, I have every intention of keeping up the constant and unremitting action that is necessary, to keep you, your family and community safe and secure.
For now though, let me wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.