Newsletter September 2018

Newsletteraug 18

Refreshed Police and Crime Plan launched

I have released my refreshed Police and Crime Plan which outlines the crucial work needed, with partners, to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour (with a focus on violent crime), protect victims and witnesses, making sure criminal justice works for our communities and safeguard the region's most vulnerable. The more prominent focus on tackling violent crime is very timely and I have already invested in the Get Away N Get Safe programme to reach young people in Year 6 to encourage them to make the right choices. This is in addition to the latest round of my Safer Communities Fund which is targeting violent crime and we are also working hard to secure additional funding from the Governments Serious Violent Strategy. Other key refreshes in the Plan include further encouraging and supporting our communities to report offences, particularly ones that involve people who may be vulnerable and the support and wellbeing of our police officers, staff and volunteers.

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PCP COVER REFRESHED

Human trafficking gang convicted

Members of an Organised Crime Group, which trafficked victims from Slovakia into Leeds, have been convicted of exploitation offences. The convictions were the result of a 5 year investigation by West Yorkshire Police's Human Trafficking Unit and included help from partners including Leeds City Council, the DWP and HMRC, NHS, Salvation Army, Hope for Justice and the CPS. The investigation uncovered that the group were trafficking vulnerable victims to the UK, promising them a better life or using the threat of violence. Once the victims were in the UK the group would exploit them - housing them in nearby, often sub-standard accommodation (controlled by them) and arranging the victims' housing benefits to be paid directly to the group. The group would also set up bank accounts in the victim's names but would then take all or some control of these before getting them to sign on to any other benefits available to them. In a pre-planned operation in November 2013 West Yorkshire Police and partners raided addresses across the south and west of Leeds. A total of 37 victims aged 1 to 57 were rescued and referred to the National Referral Mechanism where they received appropriate support.

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Standing against domestic violence

All five West Yorkshire Councils joined me in taking a stand against domestic violence with the White Ribbon campaign, and received White Ribbon accreditation status. The development was recognised at an event in Huddersfield at the Textile's Centre which also included inputs on sharing best practice with fellow professionals around issues of coercion and control, impact on children, older people, Honour Based Abuse and shared learning from Domestic Homicide Reviews. We don't want a single person to suffer abuse, whether physical or emotional, and victims should feel able to come forward and report offences. To report domestic abuse and to find out more visit www.westyorkshire.police.uk/domesticabuse, in an emergency, always call 999. .

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White Ribbon Event

Campaign launched to urge residents to help prevent modern slavery

I have teamed up with West Yorkshire Police to urge residents to help prevent modern slavery - by watching out for it in their neighbourhood and workplace. It is a crime that is often 'hidden in plain sight' and it is thought that it is very under-reported. Our communities are one of our best tools in the fight against human traffickers. We really need their support to report any suspicions, no matter how small, which is why this new campaign has been launched. It's a common misconception that people who have been trafficked can just walk away. Victims often don't speak English, they have their money and documents taken away from them, and if they even think about leaving they face very real threats of violence against themselves and even more disturbing, their families back home.

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MODERN SLAVERY

 

£50,000 to support food aid across West Yorkshire

Food aid across the county received a boost following a joint donation of £49,900 from me and West Yorkshire Police's Chief Constable, Dee Collins. We made the donation to the West Yorkshire Food Poverty Network from the Police Property Act Fund which is used for charitable causes. The West Yorkshire Food Poverty Network is made up of 5 smaller food networks that cover each district of West Yorkshire. The Network ensures all 5 areas are working together to bring about a coordinated approach to tackling food poverty. It's a tragedy that in this day and age there are still people that struggle to buy enough food for themselves or their families, but it's still a real issue in many of our communities. It's fantastic to see monies from the Police Property Act Fund, which is created from the sale of recovered stolen property where the owners are not known and cannot be traced, used in this way to help many people in such circumstances across West Yorkshire.

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Yag

Youth Advisory Group members join the office

My office recently received help from two young people on work experience. Joe and Lois, both 17 and from Wakefield, are part of my Youth Advisory Group and requested to have placements to find out more about my role and the work of my office. It was fantastic to have them join my office for a short time, they were both highly motivated and capable, and I am sure they are destined for great things. We all really appreciated having them around and positively contributing, they are a real credit to themselves, their families and West Yorkshire. Young people have such a valuable contribution to make to policing and community safety and that is why I created my Youth Advisory Group, which Joe and Lois both are a part of. The group is looking for new members so if you know someone that may be interested you can find out more information on my website.

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Yorkshire and Humber Regional Cyber Crime Unit deliver their first cyber prevent initiative

The Yorkshire and Humber Regional Cyber Crime Unit delivered its first Cyber Prevent initiative to help children and young people use technology safely and legally. The final of the initiative - which involved a cyber challenge - involved 42 children and young people on Saturday 18 August at the Bridge Project in Leeds. A careers day specifically aimed at cyber security will follow and plans are being worked on to deliver a similar project next year. The Unit worked in partnership with Cyber Security Challenge UK and GrillaTech Limited to deliver the project. This was an innovative competition which captured the imagination of young people across the region. Prevention plays such an important role in tackling cyber crime and it's crucial that these messages are presented in an engaging way. .

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Hate crime reporting app

Stop Hate UK have launched a free hate crime reporting app. The App is available on Android and IOS platforms by going to Google Play or the Apple App Store and searching for 'Stop Hate UK'. Find out more about it here:  http://www.stophateuk.org/report-hate-crime/west-yorkshire-hate-crime-reporting-app

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