OUR 999 CHIEFS TO FACE CRITICS
THE way Ashbourne is covered by emergency services is due to come under close scrutiny by a lobby group at a public meeting in the town this month.
Ashbourne and District Fifty Plus Forum has invited police commissioner Hardyal Dhindsa and ambulance bosses to face questions over police presence and emergency response times.
Mr Dhindsa, who was elected into his role overseeing Derbyshire’s police budgets and resources, is to comment on reduced policing levels and the impact this has on the rate of crimes – and solving them.
Two other guests from East Midlands Ambulance Service, Tim Slater, general manager for Derbyshire, and Samantha Westwell, ambulance operations manager for communications and engagement, will be quizzed on the effectiveness of their service.
Forum member Andrea Cooke said: “Ashbourne has reduced visible police presence and the closure of the police station means reporting crime is not as easy.
“Mr Dhindsa will discuss the increase in internet crime and how police resources have been allocated to deal with this while maintaining a police force which is seen by the public to be dealing with crime.
“He will also discuss the conviction rates given the news crimes are increasing and are not being solved nationally – in particular in Derbyshire,” she added.
“And he will comment on reduced policing and the impact this has on the rate of crime and solving them. East Midlands Ambulance Services will be discussing their changing role in the community.
“They will discuss response times to emergency calls and how they are dealt with and procedures to improve them.
“They will explain working across boundaries between counties and the challenges this produces. Working with other organisations such as NHS, Police and Fire Services can produce efficiencies in effective working and costs.
“They will explain how this is evolving and if this effective for the public.”
The open meeting, which can be attended by all age groups, is due to take place on Friday, November 16 from 10am until 12.30pm at Elim Pentecostal Church in Waterside Park, and will also hear from Clare Waterfall, project manager within the Prevention Team of Adult Care at Derbyshire County Council.
She will be there to explain the Safe Places Scheme, which offers people somewhere to go if they are scared, lost or in need of some help.
These public buildings in towns and communities include libraries, shops, pharmacies and GP surgeries and have stickers in windows to show they are part of the scheme.
She will explain how to apply to be part of the scheme and who is eligible.
Refreshments will be available for a small charge at the meeting, which will be followed by the group’s annual gerneral meeting, and parking is free.
He will comment on reduced policing and the impact this has on crime clear-up rates. Andrea Cooke
Hardyal Dhindsa oversees Derbyshire’s police budgets and resources