PCC learns about being Fearless in West Yorkshire (24 Jul 2015)

The West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Mark Burns-Williamson, attended a Fearless workshop at Horbury Academy earlier this month, with the workshop aim to educate the students about crimes which relate to Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE). 

During the workshop they learnt how to help protect themselves against these crimes, how to get support if they, or anyone they know, needed help in relation to these crimes, and where to go if they wanted to report information anonymously.

Fearless is the youth service used by the national crime-fighting Charity Crimestoppers to encourage and support young people to share information anonymously about crime.  It aims to educate and empower a generation with the knowledge that they have a choice to be fearless against crime.

Its website, Fearless.org, provides a host of information for young people, and those who interact with young people, to find out more about crime, and where to seek further information or help, if needed.  You can also access the anonymous online form to provide information about crime without having to reveal any of your personal details.

The PCC had the opportunity to see first-hand the work Fearless has been doing with Bauer Media over the past few months.  The workshops, involving over 150 students, have been taking place in a number of secondary schools across West Yorkshire.

The workshops consist of a Fearless worker speaking to the students and providing the educational aspect of understanding crimes which can relate to child sexual exploitation, such as sexual abuse, rape, drugs and provision of alcohol.

West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson, said: "I was pleased to be able to see the Fearless crime workshops in action and to find out what they're doing to empower young people and to help them help make their communities a safer place for everyone.

"Educating young people about making the right decisions in life is important and can mean the difference between a good and a bad future for them. Helping them understand the very real dangers of sexting and putting themselves into risky situations is vital, as is raising awareness of how sexual exploitation and grooming take place and how they can reduce the risk of becoming a victim."

The result of these workshops have been the creation of the students' very own radio adverts, some of which have been aired on the radio station Aire.fm in May this year.  The radio adverts encourage young people to give information on CSE related crimes, such as drugs, rape and abuse, and have reached almost half a million people in the region.

Gemma Wilson, Crimestoppers Regional Manager for Yorkshire & Humberside, said "I've been so impressed by the level of work and understanding the students have shown during the workshops.  They've truly given it their all to come up with some excellent ideas and views on what is a very difficult subject to discuss. 

"The radio adverts have been innovative and unique, which will hopefully have made them memorable to the general public.  It is so important to empower our young people to understand they have choices to 'Be Fearless' against crime, and they have an outlet to report information anonymously if they have any concerns about speaking to the police or other trusted adult". 


Mark Burns-Williamson with Samuel Evans (Fearless Co-ordinator), Stuart Piper (Police and Crime Commissioner Safeguarding Co-ordinator) and Kristian Tiffany (Bauer Media Head of Creative).
© Copyright West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner 2019