43. Mr. De la Bère
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether, in view of the crime wave which this country is experiencing, he will consider creating a first police reserve, similar to the arrangements made during the war, under which retired members of the Police Force can return for one or five years to assist the understaffed Force, with a view to relieving strain on them.
§ Mr. Ede
Although the great majority of the first police reserves who served during the war have now retired, there are still a few serving in some county and borough forces, and the question of rebuilding this reserve is at present under consideration. The most urgent need at present is, however, to bring the regular police up to full establishment.
Mr. De la Bère
Is not the Home Secretary aware that the prime cause of the failure to check the present crime wave is due to the shortage of police; and, further, does he not realise that it 560 is vital and urgent that something should be done to secure better policing throughout the country? We realise, of course, that the present Police Force is excellent, but it is too small.