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Amber Rudd told police chiefs not to write a “press release” asking for money if crime goes up

The home secretary has not held one-to-one meetings with any of the UK’s police and crime commissioners (PCCs) since taking office.

Thames Valley PCC Anthony Stansfeld said he had requested an audience with the Conservative Amber Rudd but has yet to meet her.

He told the BBC there were “several issues” he would like to discuss but the pair had yet to meet in private.

The Home Office said Ms Rudd had met some PCCs with “other parties” present.

A freedom of information request submitted by the BBC revealed that Ms Rudd had not met with any commissioners one-to-one since she took up the post in July 2016.

It comes after Ms Rudd said police forces in England and Wales should not ask for money from the government when crime goes up, but focus on prevention.

She told a conference last year “of course, part of being a police and crime commissioner is about speaking to the government about resourcing”.

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Anthony Stansfeld said he met Theresa May “three of for times” when she was home secretary

Durham PCC Ron Hogg, whose force was visited by Ms Rudd and policing minister Nick Hurd last July, said: “It would be good if she were to engage with us on a one-to-one basis.”

The Association of Police and Crime Commissioners says the PCC role includes contributing to “national and international policing capabilities set out by the home secretary”.

Mr Stansfeld said he met with Theresa May when she was home secretary on “three or four” occasions, and added the meetings benefitted the force.

Thames Valley Police is forecast to make cuts of £14.3m until 2020/21 to take the total of money saved by the force to £113m in 10 years.

‘Missing a trick’

Mr Hogg added the Ms Rudd needed to be “more proactive”.

“She is missing a trick here. There are opportunities that she should seek to engage with us, I would encourage her to do that,” he said.

Shadow policing minister Louise Haigh said Ms Rudd had “shown herself to be divorced from the reality of policing on the ground”.

She added: “The public would expect the home secretary to at least have the courtesy to meet with police commissioners to explain herself.”

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