Durham and Darlington Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Ron Hogg, is keen to improve his engagement with the voluntary sector and has therefore developed a voluntary sector forum. The latest forum, held last week provided an opportunity for the sector to feed into the consultation of the refreshed police and crime plan. The plan covers the police and its partners to work together to reduce crime and make communities safer.
Four new priorities have been added to the existing plan. These are:
- To reduce the incidence and impact of domestic abuse in all of its forms
- To improve public confidence in local policing
- To work with partners to improve the service provided to those with poor mental health (victims and offenders)
- To reduce reoffending
Ron Hogg is keen to gather the views of the voluntary sector on whether these 4 new priorities are appropriate and ways the police and its partners could work together to deliver them.
For those unable to attend the forum an online consultation is now open – http://www.durham-pcc.gov.uk/Get-Involved/Public-Consultations.aspx. Closing date is 15th February 2015.
Ron provided an update on the funding responsibilities of the office of the PCC:
- Victims Services
From 1st October 2014 PCCs took over the responsbility for commissioning victims services locally. For 2015/16 Victim Support will be recommissioned to deliver victims services within Durham and Darlington. During this period the office of the PCC will try to research the needs of victims and any gaps in provision. Specialist victims services, including homicide, will contiue to be delivered nationally.
- Restorative Justice
Money made available from the Prisoners Earning Act has been used to develop restorative justice approaches. Responsibility for this has been passed to PCCs. All police officers within the Durham Constabularly are trained in restorative justice approaches and all future approaches will be developed in order to ensure they are victim led.
- Community Safety Funding
Safe Durham Partnership and Safe Darlington Partnership will receive funding to continue it’s community safety activity. Alongside this, there will be an opportunity for some grants to be made available for community initatives, as with 2014/15. There has been no decision made as to how this fund should be managed; the type or organisations it should fund or whether or not applications should encourage collaborative working.
A further forum will be arranged for the Spring and will continue to provide opportunities for engagement between the PCC and voluntary sector. If you have any thoughts on themes for future events contact me firstname.lastname@example.org