This note is delivering by Office of the Deputy Prime Minister in England & Wales. “Existing Scenario: Crime and fear of crime continue to be one of the key concerns of the population. A significant change over the last 20 to 30 years has been the increasing impact that drugs has on crime. The level of involvement of young people involved in crime is still too high. But the majority of the young people do not commit crime and are more likely to be victims than perpetrators. Tackling crime and the fear of crime involves a wide range of partners. But there is still too much bureaucracy that gets in the way of Crime and Disorder Partnerships, Drug Action partnerships and Youth Offending Teams working effectively. Information sharing and data exchange about community safety issues between partners is often poor largely because of anxiety about data protection issues. There is little financial incentive for local authorities to invest in preventative services Some policing functions may be more cost effective if they were carried out by local government (and vice-versa) Proposal: Planning requirements to be streamlined, funding streams to be pooled and monitoring requirements to be proportionate to need. A single pot for community safety with allocations set over a three year period. Requirements for capital and revenue split should be removed. Ability to roll forward between years should be allowed. Freedoms and Flexibilities should be applicable to all agencies represented on the Crime and Disorder Partnership involving an Excellent authority Joint work to develop a protocol framework which meets the information needs of Crime and Disorder Partnerships, YOT’s and DAT’s. Creation of Invest to Prevent budget for use by Excellent Authorities Organisations represented on Crime and Disorder Partnerships to be able to agree locally responsibility for functions. Further scoping work to be undertaken jointly to identify initiatives which could have a more significant impact on a wide range of problems.
These proposals will:
Free up Crime and Disorder Partnerships, DAT’s and YOT’s to focus on achieving reduction in crime and fear of crime rather than dealing with red tape. Provide a means of achieving a greater impact on the levels of crime and fear of crime Over the long term provide savings in the total cost to the public purse Issue to be addressed
Tackling crime is a national and local priority but:
Crime and Disorder Partnerships need to be given more freedom from government to tackle local issues There is insufficient investment in longer term preventative services Some "community safety" functions may be more cost-effective if they were carried out by a different agency than is the case at the moment. Lack of power to require greater responsibility to be taken by the private sector to address community safety concerns. What needs to change?
The relationship between central government and Crime and Disorder Partnerships, including the balance between national and local targets and priorities; changes to funding streams, planning and monitoring requirements.
Need for flexibility in how any changes impact differently on 2-tier authorities as against unitary authorities Removal of any barriers which prevent local government to take on certain traditional policing functions and vice versa, where this is agreed locally. Insufficient powers to require the private sector to take a greater responsibility of the community safety agenda. Changes to funding mechanisms would be required in order to incentivise investment in preventative services. 1. Benefits to citizens Greater reduction in levels of crime and fear of crime. Greater emphasis on crime issues that are a priority for residents locally. A significant improvement in the quality of life of people who live, work and visit the area Will provide opportunities to create, build and empower local communities to tackle crime particularly through a greater emphasis on long-term preventative work with young people and with our communities in their neighbourhoods. Greater opportunities to tackle the problems of anti-social behaviour. 2. Benefits to local government and other local bodies Frees up resources to concentrate on achieving outcome of reducing crime and fear of crime Could provide opportunity to release greater capacity for police to deal with key community safety concerns Provides all agencies with clarity about data sharing and information exchange thereby improving decision making and resource allocation Provides opportunity for longer term resource planning Provides opportunity for freedoms and flexibilities to be made available to a wider range of organisations. Will strengthen the role of Crime and Disorder Partnerships and help to engage those agencies which are not as engaged as they need to be currently. 3. Benefits to central government Streamline various funding streams Provides opportunity for government to pilot freedoms and flexibilities with organisations other than local government. Provides an opportunity to act as a test bed for the transfer of functions to the most appropriate agency. Provides an opportunity to pilot initiatives in some or all of the excellent Local authorities designed to test the impact of longer-term preventative community safety initiatives on crime levels and resources. Should improve government resource allocation Will help to make government targets more meaningful and therefore more achievable. Links to Shared Priorities
This is an existing shared priority and has strong linkages to other shared priorities. For example, more effective traffic enforcement could reduce the number of people injured through traffic accidents. Also strong links between the crime agenda and the street scene and liveability agenda. Finally, to tackle crime effectively requires further progress being made on other shared priorities, particularly education.
Audit Commission report “Misspent Youth” made clear the need for greater investment in preventative services.
Further action required to scope proposal
Working group(s) would be needed with Home Office and other government departments take forward and scope some of these ideas further.
Government contact(s) Home Office: – Tyson Hepple ODPM, DCMS DFES, DOT, DoH Other contacts Dennis Skinner – Assistant Chief Executive Tony Brooks – Borough Commander, Camden Police, MPS Lead Council; Supporting Council(s) LB Camden – Lead All Excellent Councils
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