West Midlands Police is to axe 2,000 jobs as a result of Government spending cuts, an MP has revealed.
The force will lose one in seven staff - and crime will rise as a result, claimed Selly Oak MP Steve McCabe (Lab).
He urged the Government to make law and order a top spending priority, even if that meant cutting spending on other things.
The coalition Government has pledged to protect spending on health and international development.
But Mr McCabe said: “I would not prioritise those two things above basic safety and security.”
He told the House of Commons: “I understand that the West Midlands police force, which is admittedly the second-largest force in the country, is looking at losing about 2,000 police jobs as a result of what is planned.
“To give an idea of scale, about 14,000 people are employed by the force.”
West Midlands Police has 8,500 police officers and 4,500 civilian staff, and Mr McCabe said he expected most of the jobs cut would be civilian posts.
But this would lead to police doing more paperwork and administration, he said.
“Rather than seeing crime fighters, we are going to see trained police officers back on front desks acting as receptionists. They will be answering phone calls about minor matters and carrying out back-office admin tasks.
“They will not be out on the streets but be back in the offices reverting to doing simple typing tasks.”
Mr McCabe told MPs: “We are faced with even more severe cuts on top-cuts to magistrates courts, to police, to probation, to prisons and to the entire criminal justice system.
“There is no area where the axe will not fall. It is inevitable that the scale of cuts will lead to a rise in crime and public alarm. That is a given.”
Police are facing drastic spending cuts as a result of the Government’s attempts to cut the budget deficit and reduce public spending.
West Midlands Police would not confirm that 2,000 jobs were at risk. A spokesman said the force could not comment on speculation.
West Mercia Police this week announced it was axing 300 posts.
Full details of public spending cuts will be published by the Government in a spending review on October 20.
Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said: “Labour doubled our national debt and left us with the biggest deficit in the G20. As much as Labour Members might now like to pretend otherwise, if they had won the election, they would have had no choice but to take action to reduce the deficit.”