HC Deb 18 June 1992 vol 209 c1029
10. Mrs. Angela Knight

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is his estimate of the proportion of domestic burglaries which do not involve forced entry.

Mr. Jack

The last British crime survey carried out in 1988 showed that 18 per cent. of all burglary victims interviewed said that their homes had not been left secure when they went out. However, the latest data from the Metropolitan police district showed that 29 per cent. of domestic burglaries involved no forced entry.

Mrs. Knight

Is my hon. Friend aware that some of my constituents consider that at least part of the responsibility for rising crime in Derbyshire should be taken by the county council for not funding the police properly? As such a considerable proportion of break-ins are not forced, will my hon. Friend suggest that the public help themselves by locking up properly and by joining neighbourhood watch schemes such as those that operate in Erewash?

Mr. Jack

I hope that at the county council elections the people of Derbyshire will lock the door and throw away the key on Derbyshire county council. We have heard of their misdoings for too long. But in fairness, some members of the Derbyshire police force are making their contribution to solving the problems that my hon. Friend enumerates. I pay tribute to Inspector Rosey Kiddy for her work on neighbourhood watch schemes. I commend to the House an excellent crime prevention newspaper which advertises some of the excellent work that is being done by neighbourhood watch schemes to enable individuals to protect their properties as my hon. Friend suggests.

Mr. Barnes

Will the Minister have a word with the Secretary of State for the Environment to ensure that Derbyshire county council has a decent standard spending assessment so that the services needed can be provided? The Government, not the county council, are responsible for any problems that exist in Derbyshire, which has been acting within the Government's framework.

Mr. Jack

If the hon. Gentleman will convey messages back to Derby about the effective use of resources, particularly spending up to the amount that is available to be spent on the police service, I am sure that his remarks will be listened to by my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment.