North East police merger decision “disappointing” - Macdonald
North East Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald has called on Police Scotland to maintain its commitment to policing in Aberdeen following the news that the two North East Divisions are to merge.
Division A, covering Aberdeen City, will merge with Division B, Aberdeenshire and Moray from 1 January 2016, despite concerns about the impact such a move will have on local policing.
Lewis Macdonald said :
“Police Scotland’s decision to merge the two North East Divisions is a disappointing one, and there is hard work ahead for local officers to ensure that policing standards are not affected.
“The commitment to maintain the North East headquarters at the Queen Street site in Aberdeen for the immediate future is to be welcomed. As Scotland’s third city, it would be unthinkable for Aberdeen to be without a police headquarters of its own.
“Clearly, decisions will need to be made about the relocation of the North East headquarters when the lease on the current Queen Street site comes to an end, and I will continue to engage with Police Scotland in an effort to ensure that a strong presence in maintained in the city.
“I will also continue to engage with senior officers to ensure that the best practices currently employed by local officers are not lost as a result of the merger. Aberdeen and Grampian have an excellent reputation for a community policing culture, which must be strengthened and not weakened by this merger.
“The North East has been hit hard by Police Scotland cuts imposed by SNP Ministers. Senior officers need to work with staff and the public to ensure that this is decision does not lead to any deterioration in the quality of policing services.”