The Press & Journal reports on figures the Scottish Conservatives sourced through an FOI request which show that the number of special constables in Scotland has fallen by almost 500 over two years.
The part-time, volunteer officers have similar powers to regular police officers and assist in patrols and community engagement.
"These figures are a huge concern, especially in light of planned cuts in police officer numbers as well.
“Special constables have been described as crucial by those in Police Scotland, not only helping to carry out key duties but also providing an important link between the police and communities.
“With our police workforce under increasing strain this support is more important than ever, but in just a few years hundreds have left the force.
“This should be raising alarm bells within Police Scotland, and efforts need to be made to discover why so many are leaving.”
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