Dumfriesshire MSP Elaine Murray, Dumfries and Galloway MP Russell Brown and Labour Group Leader on Dumfries and Galloway Council Ronnie Nicholson have expressed their anger as the closure of Dumfries Police Control room is to go ahead this Wednesday (28 May 2014).
The closure was confirmed at a meeting of the Scottish Police Authority’s Human Resources and Remuneration Committee on 16 May 2014.
Commenting on the closure, Elaine Murray, Shadow Minister for Legal Affairs and Community Safety, said: “The Scottish Police Authority seem to have completely ignored the counter proposals submitted by staff. No-one locally supports this decision – thousands of local people signed the Save Our Control Room petition but the Scottish Police Authority Board and Police Scotland have repeatedly failed to take on the board their views. The Police did not consult local people or local councillors when the closure was proposed and the Police Authority simply rubber stamped the decision at their committee meeting. It highlights the lack of democratic accountability for Police Scotland.”
Russell Brown said: “With this final decision, Police Scotland has lost the right to call itself a national police force. They have closed public service desks in local police stations and now they have closed our local control room. If you include the closures of our local courts, you can see that the heart is being ripped out of our local justice system.”
“The Chief Constable recently said he hoped to bring new jobs to Dumfries and Galloway but we still haven’t seen any evidence of those jobs. It’s no good him claiming everyone has been offered a job within Police Scotland but not everyone can relocate their entire family to the central belt to suit his and the Scottish Government’s policy of centralisation of Policing. The question people locally will have is, what will be cut next, with Police Stations apparently the most likely”.
Labour Group Leader Ronnie Nicholson added: “No one will be surprised at this decision and our thoughts are very much with those who will find themselves out of work. Even although some people have relocated or found other posts within Police Scotland, this is still a loss of jobs to our region that we can ill-afford. ”