Police and Crime Commissioner supports Safer Places in Kirklees (22 Mar 2017)

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner visited Mencap in Kirklees this week to see the progress of the 'Safe Places' scheme which has received grant support from his Safer Communities Fund.

Mencap in Kirklees is a charity that works with people who have learning disabilities and with their families and carers to enable them to lead full and purposeful lives.

The Safe Places scheme runs across West Yorkshire and is for vulnerable people to feel more confident in being independent when travelling.

Premises that are open to the public such as shops, offices, stations and public buildings apply to become a Safe Place. Safe Places are recognised by the Safe Places logo which is displayed in participating premises.

Vulnerable people who are members of the Safe Places Scheme carry a card with their name and the details of up to three people that can be contacted in the event that support is required.

If a vulnerable person arrives feeling unwell, confused, lost, or having been a victim of crime staff within a Safe Place are asked to assist by contacting one of the people named on the back of the Safe Places Card or the emergency services and allow the vulnerable person to wait on the premises until the named person or police/ambulance arrive.

Mencap run the scheme in Kirklees and the project received a grant of £1240 from the Safer Communities Fund which went towards providing leaflets, printed information and promotional material for the scheme across Kirklees.

The Safer Communities Fund is run by Mark and financed through money recovered from criminals by West Yorkshire Police and prosecutors. It provides grants of up to £5000 to voluntary, community groups, charities and partners across West Yorkshire.

Mark said: "Mencap in Kirklees are doing some really innovative and positive work and it was great to meet the team who are obviously very passionate about what they do, also working closely with Metro, Kirklees Council and West Yorkshire Police across the district.

"The Safe Places scheme is a brilliant initiative and is making a real difference in our communities. Safeguarding vulnerable people is a key outcome of my Police and Crime Plan which the work of Mencap and partners in Kirklees definitely contributes to so I was very happy to be able to provide some funding and speak to Samantha, the steering group, and partners in person to thank them for the great work they are doing.

"The next round of the Safer Communities Fund opens for applications on 24 April, for more information visit my website www.westyorkshire-pcc.gov.uk or call 01924 294000."

Samantha Jones, Development Officer for Mencap in Kirklees said: "The Safe Places scheme has been running for 5 years and is still developing and evolving. Mark has been a driving force behind the scheme becoming involved with the new Safe Places app and has fully supported our work to keep local people safe and mobile. It was great for our members to be able to meet Mark and say thank you for his support in person."

To find out more about Mencap in Kirklees visit https://mencapinkirklees.wordpress.com/

Safe Places Mencap Visit

Back row - Andrew Goring Bus Station Manager, Helen Schofield Bus Station Manager, Andrea steering group member, Michelle Linney Hate Crime Officer West Yorkshire Police
Middle - Mark Burns-Williamson, Sandra steering group member, Monika Tomaszewicz Making Space, Sarah Carlile Safeguarding Partnership Manager, Sharon Hewitt Interim Safeguarding Children's Board Manager
Front - Samantha Jones Safe Places Co-ordinator, Tina and Michaela both steering group members.

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