Tackle crime and anti-social behaviour
We cannot hope to achieve our vision of keeping West Yorkshire safe and feeling safe without a strong focus on tackling crime and anti-social behaviour (ASB). Around 60% of those who responded to the ‘Your Priorities, Your Plan’ survey said that reducing crime and ASB was important to them. 70% of respondents also stated that increased police visibility would make them feel safer. Clearly the police have a key role to play in delivering this outcome and I have pledged to protect frontline policing by working to rebuild the number of police officers lost during the past decade, and so strengthen neighbourhood policing in West Yorkshire as far as possible.
Criminality, however, is constantly changing and becoming more complex, resulting in greater demands being placed on our police service. Government cuts to other public services also impact on the police’s ability to effectively tackle crime and ASB. Joint-working between the police and health services has led to improved responses for those suffering mental health crisis, whilst the recently established West Yorkshire Violence Reduction Unit also illustrates the benefits of taking a holistic view of serious violence and how the expertise of different partners can be brought together to seek out new solutions. We can do more to achieve this outcome by such partnership working, and I will do all I can to support collaborative work to tackle the root causes of crime, and divert people away from ASB.
I will seek to reduce crime in our communities by ensuring the police and partners are focused on preventing crime and reoffending. By taking this two strand approach we will not only reduce the opportunity for crime to occur but divert people away from offending. In early intervention and diversion strategies, there is great potential for strong partnership working, particularly around managing offending behaviour and problem solving approaches to ASB. Restorative options, deferred prosecution projects, and perpetrator rehabilitation programmes are all strategies which have been developed since the first edition of this plan. I will continue to support the close working relationships with our partners which can foster this work, and ultimately help empower communities to seek solutions to keep West Yorkshire safe and feeling safe.
How we will deliver
- Listening to people. Listening to our communities to focus attention on the crimes which have the greatest impact on them.
- Understanding our communities. Monitoring levels of crimes being committed and reported in communities and ensuring that the police and partners are tackling them.
- Working together. Working with key partners in prison, probation, health and housing services to reduce reoffending, and build the partnership response to crime and ASB in our communities.
- Preventing and intervening earlier. Implementing the West Yorkshire Reducing Reoffending Strategy and addressing the factors which can lead to criminal behaviour, including mental health and substance misuse.
- Improving our services. Evaluating policies, practices, and performance to ensure that we are constantly improving the way we work to provide a police service that the public have confidence in.
- Providing resources. Supporting and resourcing community initiatives which divert people away from criminal behaviour, particularly supporting young people, and helping to build safer and stronger local communities.
- Providing resources. Protecting frontline policing and providing resources for the police to deter, detect and deal with criminals.