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Public safety partners have met to discuss the progress being made to reduce crime across Derbyshire.

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Police performance under the radar at latest scrutiny meeting

by Amber Valley Info on Wednesday 9 October 2019

Public safety partners have met to discuss the progress being made to reduce crime across Derbyshire.

A meeting of Derbyshire Police and Crime Commissioner Hardyal Dhindsa's Strategic Priorities Assurance (SPA) Board was held today (Monday 7 October) to evaluate the PCC's work and achievements in meeting his Police and Crime Plan objectives.

During the meeting, the panel approved the Commissioner's latest small grant allocations which will see seven organisations sharing a total of £15,326 to improve safety in their communities over the next 12 months.

The PCC holds up to three opportunities every year for community organisations to apply for grants up to £2,500 to aid their work, in addition to the £200,000 he shares between organisations as part of his large grants scheme.

The scheme ensures vital funding is directed to where it is needed most to support local communities and their efforts to keep crime and antisocial behaviour at bay.

Many of the successful projects are focused on protecting young people and the PCC was pleased to hear during the meeting about the huge amount of work taking place to prevent youth crime between police and multi-agency partners.

The confidential Got Your Back scheme, in particular, which was commissioned by the PCC to improve support for young victims of crime, has seen hundreds of young people referred to its services, including a high number of self-referrals thanks to a dedicated website promoting a range of ways to contact the team.

The service, run by independent charity Remedi and launched in April 2016, supported 1,814 young people between April 2016 and March 2019.

Preventing youth crime remains a top priority for the Commissioner, particularly violence and knife crime.

This is why he continues to invest in services which prevent young people at risk of offending from taking those early steps into violence and has stressed the need for local authority funding to remain in place to safeguard vital diversionary activities and support programmes.

Figures discussed at the meeting show between June 2016/17 and June 2018/19, recorded knife crime increased by 43% across the county (from 438 to 629) - 15% of which involved young victims. During the same period, recorded Violence with Injury offences increased from 7,258 to 10,155 (+40%) while ASB decreased by 10% from 46,090 to 41,521 incidents.

"Each act of violence produces one or more victims and this can be especially damaging to the futures of young people who are affected," said Mr Dhindsa after the meeting.

"We are working very hard to ensure anybody affected by violence - young or otherwise - has the right support and help available to them to reverse the emotional and psychological damage it can cause.

"At the other end of the spectrum, we continue to emphasise education and prevention to guide young people to making the right life choices before harmful influences steer them in the wrong direction. These must be backed up by robust enforcement and punitive measures, of course, but young people today need help not handcuffs to stand any chance of changing their futures."

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