TALK­ING POL­I­TICS Praise for brave and hard­work­ing po­lice of­fi­cers

Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser - - Talking Politics -

The Scot­tish Par­lia­ment re­turned from the Christ­mas and new year re­cess on Mon­day.

The fes­tive pe­riod is the one time of the year that the Par­lia­men­tary busi­ness does close down and the ever-in­creas­ing emails cease.

This is a time when most of us will have had the op­por­tu­nity to re­lax and spend qual­ity time with friends and fam­ily.

How­ever, those who work in the emer­gency ser­vices and in armed forces serv­ing abroad will not have been so for­tu­nate.

Too often we take for granted the out­stand­ing work these men and women do, on a daily ba­sis, to keep us safe.

That’s why award cer­e­monies like the Scot­tish Po­lice Fed­er­a­tion’s (SPF) bravery awards are so im­por­tant.

This cer­e­mony was in­tro­duced for the first time four years ago and it has been a priv­i­lege to not just be in­vited, as the con­vener of the Par­lia­ment’s jus­tice com­mit­tee, but to be asked to present one of the awards each year.

There were 22 of­fi­cers who se­cured a bravery award in the cer­e­mony, among them Coat­bridge’s very own fan­tas­tic four.

The SPF paid trib­ute to Sergeant Mark Chivers and con­sta­bles Neil McBain, Chris Mains and Dar­ren Con­nor, who were called to re­ports of a man try­ing to throw him­self from the twelfth floor of the Jack­son Court flats in Coat­bridge.

In in­cred­i­bly dif­fi­cult cir­cum­stances, these four po­lice of­fi­cers, re­gard­less of the risk to their own lives, suc­ceeded in pulling the man to safety.

This an­nual bravery awards cer­e­mony pro­vides the op­por­tu­nity to take time to stop and ac­knowl­edge, and pay trib­ute to, the courage of Scot­land’s po­lice.

These men and women can never be sure what po­ten­tial threat­en­ing sit­u­a­tion they may face when they start the shift on duty.

By con­trast, the pub­lic can be con­fi­dent that, what­ever the prob­lem or cri­sis, these front­line of­fi­cers will go that ex­tra mile to pro­tect us and our lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties across Scot­land.

An ex­am­ple of the rou­tine com­mu­nity work which was car­ried out by po­lice in La­nark­shire was Op­er­a­tion For­ward.

In the fi­nal months of 2018, an eightweek cam­paign was car­ried out tar­get­ing crime af­fect­ing lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties across La­nark­shire.

The fo­cus was on vi­o­lent crime, an­ti­so­cial be­hav­iour, drug of­fences, and house-break­ings.

From the out­set this cam­paign achieved pos­i­tive re­sults. The first fort­night saw sev­eral war­rants ex­e­cuted, ex­tra pa­trols on the streets in ar­eas of house-break­ings and ar­rests made re­lat­ing to pos­ses­sion of drugs, weapons and un­ex­plained quan­ti­ties of cash.

As an ex­am­ple, in the week com­menc­ing De­cem­ber 10, Mon­k­lands alone saw 19 peo­ple charged with a va­ri­ety of of­fences un­der the Mis­use of Drugs Act with sub­stances rang­ing from co­caine, cannabis, di­amor­phine and val­ium all re­cov­ered.

The suc­cess of Op­er­a­tion For­ward demon­strates that there are few more ef­fec­tive ways of fight­ing crime than hav­ing bob­bies-on-the-beat, keep­ing our lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties safe and de­ter­ring would-be crim­i­nals.

It is, there­fore, to be hoped that when the Scot­tish gov­ern­ment’s bud­get is fi­nalised, the de­clin­ing num­bers of po­lice on our streets will be ad­dressed.

In the mean­time, I wish all emer­gency ser­vice work­ers and Ad­ver­tiser read­ers a healthy and trou­ble free 2019.

Award win­ners Sergeant Chivers and con­sta­bles McBain, Mains and Con­nor

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.