London Mayor Boris Johnson yesterday chaired the first meeting of a pan-London Crime Reduction Board which includes representatives from the Metropolitan Police, local councils and the Metropolitan Police Authority.
City Hall says the new board will replace a number of smaller bodies and help key decision makers “develop a unified approach to tackling serious crime in the capital.”
In a statement issued yesterday the Mayor promised “tackling crime will always be my top priority as Mayor.”
The new board is not the first time the Mayor has tried to position himself as taking a lead on crime in the capital. During the 2008 Mayoral elections Mr Johnson vowed to Chair the MPA and “provide strong leadership” on policing.
In his manifesto Johnson wrote: “It is important for the Mayor to take a public lead, so I will chair the Metropolitan Police Authority. I will take personal responsibility. No offence will be too trivial to demand my attention. No challenge will be so big that I shrug my shoulders and pass the buck.”
However in January this year he was accused of breaking that promise when he stepped down from the Authority after less than 2 years and appointed Assembly Member Kit Malthouse as Chair.
The new board has been welcomed by Met Police Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson who attended yesterday’s meeting. Sir Paul said a body which “has all the key players around the table to work collectively to further reduce crime has to be the way forward.”