Wednesday, 21 January 2009

More information on pioneering work

Thanet district Council press release

More details on what Thanet’s status as the only neighbourhood crime and justice pioneer area in Kent should mean for local people have been announced.

Information from the government, who are running the scheme, sets out a number of aims for the initiative, which was announced in November. The scheme aims to help neighbourhoods take control of what happens in their local communities and Thanet is one of just six pioneer areas in the country. That’s in recognition of the Thanet Community Safety Partnership’s excellent work in cutting crime and finding new ways of tackling crime and anti-social behaviour. This has included setting up a Facebook group, regular features in the council’s magazine Thanet Matters and extensive press coverage of the partnership’s work on tackling problems in Marine Terrace and dealing with graffiti and domestic abuse.

Representatives from the Partnership have visited the Home Office to discuss ideas for the future, meeting with Louise Casey, the Neighbourhood Crime and Justice Advisor to the Prime Minister.

As part of the scheme, each pioneer area will be allocated a minimum number of community payback hours, thought to be around 3,000, to high profile projects that matter to local people. More focus will also be put into reporting successes back to people in individual neighbourhoods, so that they are aware of action taken to deal with crime and anti-social behaviour in their areas.

A new Community Crime Fighters scheme is also being proposed, which will give people already active in their communities training, information and support to work with neighbourhood policing teams and councils to help make their communities safer.

Mark Richardson, the council’s Community Safety Manager, is the Neighbourhood Crime and Justice Coordinator for Thanet and will be taking the proposals forward. He said: “Being a pioneer area provides Thanet with some really exciting opportunities and allows us to look at new ways to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour. Part of this work is all about communicating the Partnership’s successes, as it’s important to ensure that people feel safe in the area that they live and work in.”

Chief Inspector Rob Vinson said: "Being one of sixty pioneer areas in the country and the only one in Kent is proof that we are on the right track with regards to cutting crime and improving the area. The additional resources, such as community payback and additional funds for PACT panels, can only be a good thing for our neighbourhoods."

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