Labour’s candidate for the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner election has launched his campaign in Bognor Regis.
Michael Jones, who grew up in the town and lived there until 2008, was joined by shadow leader of the House of Lords Baroness Smith for the launch outside Bognor Town Hall, where he promised to stem cuts to police officers and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs), as well as tackling the issue of street drinkers.
Mr Jones is a West Sussex county councillor and cabinet member for public protection at Crawley Borough Council, was elected as a Labour county councillor for the Hotham and Orchard wards of the town in 2001, and was the parliamentary candidate for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton at the 2010 general election.
He said: “It’s been a fantastic turnout to support me, I’m very grateful for that, and I hope that Bognor residents will give me their backing too.
“Bognor is a beautiful town, and I won’t stand by and let the Tories take risks with public safety without a struggle.”
Baroness Smith added: “Labour’s front bench has made clear there is a real choice between having ‘Bobbies on the Beat’ and the Tories’ cuts, at this election.
“Residents in Bognor Regis and across Sussex must send a message to the Tories that they won’t tolerate such low levels of policing.”
Former town mayor Roger Nash, who was also chairman of the Bognor Neighbourhood Watch for seven years, added: “No other candidate in this police commissioner election knows Bognor Regis better.
“I’m proud to support him as the real local choice for Bognor. I’ve known Michael since he was a young volunteer vigorously supporting my elections campaigns, so it’s a real pleasure to be able to do the same this time.
“I know from my time on Neighbourhood Watch that crime and anti-social behaviour is a top concern for people locally.”
The other candidates are Conservative Katy Bourne, James Doyle from the Green Party, UKIP’s Patrick Lowe, and Lib Dem James Walsh.
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