Tackling the causes of violent crime
The Police and Crime Commissioner has set aside £1m to invest in projects which aim to cut violent crime in Kent and Medway. Matthew Scott’s new
Violence Reduction Fund is just one of the recommendations to come out of his lengthy study into the nature, scale and causes of violence in the county.
Local charities and other organisations will soon be able to bid for around £100,000 each, with the money to be spent over three years. The Commissioner said: “When I launched my Violence Reduction Challenge last summer I wanted to draw together the collective experience and expertise which exists across Kent to see what more could be done to protect people and reduce the prevalence of violent crime.
“I’m looking to invest this money in things like engagement with schools, awareness campaigns, prevention initiatives, rehabilitation projects and diversionary activities.
“Ultimately, I want to play my part in helping protect some of our most vulnerable people from the most violent.”
The Violence Reduction Challenge (VRC) has also recommended the commissioning of a new service to help victims of stalking, and the creation of a multi-agency task force in Medway to enable partners to work closer together to deal with some of the underlying causes of crime. A coordinator role within Kent Police will be created to bring all of the partners together.
Chief Constable Alan Pughsley added: “The Task Force will play an important role in tackling violence in the Medway towns. The officers will work closely with their partnership colleagues to support our ongoing efforts in confronting those who are prepared to use violence, while also acting as a deterrent to those considering it. This will help us protect some of the most vulnerable people in our communities.”
The VRC has also shaped the PCC’s decision to invest council tax receipts in 180 additional police officers this year, and to continue to support the work of the St Giles Trust, set up in 2017 to help young people at risk of being exploited by county lines gangs to turn their lives around.