England

West Midlands police chief in promise over cuts

Chief Constable Chris Sims
Image caption He said the force was looking at the way it worked to "protect the things that matter"

The Chief Constable of West Midlands Police says the public should expect to see no change in the current service after the force cuts 2,500 jobs.

Following the Comprehensive Spending Review, the force said it may have to cut £123m by 2014. Officers will make up 1,000 of the jobs going, it said.

The Police Federation has warned the cuts could result in a rise in crime.

But Chief Constable Chris Sims said his force would continue to "protect the things that matter".

Speaking to the BBC's Politics Show in the West Midlands, he said: "The principle is that we take some of our share of the burden of the spending cuts that are going on.

"I am confident that we can continue to serve the public and protect the public in the way that we currently do.

"Any cutback of this scale means cuts in jobs so we will lose some 2,500 jobs over the next four years and about 1,000 of them would be police officers.

"But I do think we must look at what they're doing rather than the jobs themselves and we have an extensive programme of change going on that's designed to protect the things that matter."

Andy Gilbert, chairman of the West Midlands Police Federation that represents rank-and-file members, said: "I know some people will think that we can do more for less but I don't think so."

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