West Mercia Police facing pandemic cost of £1.25 million

The increased cost of policing the pandemic has run to £1.25m according to the region's crime commissioner.

The increased cost of the pandemic for the region's police has been revealed
The increased cost of the pandemic for the region's police has been revealed

The figure has been confirmed by West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, John Campion, who said that the majority of the money had been spent on buying PPE for officers, and getting equipment for police staff to work remotely.

The situation is one that has been replicated across the public sector, with organisations having to adapt to staff working from home, and providing the mechanism and equipment for them to do so.

Mr Campion said that the total expense incurred as a result of Covid was £1.25m between March 19 and September 10.

The commissioner said that the money had not affected the level of policing within the region.

He said: "The extra costs incurred as a result of the pandemic were inevitable, however this hasn’t had an impact on the level of policing within West Mercia.

"The additional funds are a result of buying PPE, in order to keep our officers and public safe, as well as sourcing additional equipment to allow officers and staff to work remotely.

“I have ensured we have sought support from the Government when needed and I will maintain that contact in order to allow West Mercia police to serve communities effectively.”

The cost of the pandemic to Shropshire Council was revised down by nearly £10m earlier this month.

Impact

The authority had been preparing for a £36m bill for its costs as a result of the Covid outbreak, however, the council now estimates it to be £26.438 million

The situation for police in the West Midlands appears more stark with the region's crime commissioner David Jamieson outlining a bill of more than £10m for expenses incurred as a result of the Covid outbreak.

Mr Jamieson had told how the situation may wipe out the force's reserves – unless it can recoup money from the government.

He said that the costs had, like West Mercia, come from buying PPE for staff, as well as equipment for remote working.

However, the force has also faced the impact of reduced income with cancellations for football matches, and then matches taking place with no fans.

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