Following the well reported incidents last month I asked for an urgent meeting with the police and was pleased to meet with Chief Inspector David Robertson and Community Inspector Norman Towler this month.
During the meeting I impressed upon the police the real fear many in the community have about violent youth anti-social behaviour. Feedback from my survey also shows that many in the community are worried about other types of anti-social behaviour, including illegal motorbike driving, littering and vandalism.
You can view the results from my survey here.
I was given commitments by the police that they intend to formulate a new strategy for the area, involving all local stakeholders including: local centres, libraries, churches and community councils. This will be led by the police and I was informed that they will have additional resources and more officer overtime to help. This will enable more community and plain clothed officers to be deployed throughout the area on high visibility patrols and vital community engagement work. However, whilst I am confident this will make a difference and the new action plan will help, this is temporary (6 months – 1 year) so we must keep the pressure on for our local police to be resourced properly on a permanent basis. The dilution of local community policing over the last few years has certainly not helped.
I will continue to meet with the police to monitor progress on this new strategy and will continue to keep the community updated. Please also continue to feed comments, suggestions, problems and issues into my office so we can build a picture of what is going on to take to the police on your behalf.