APCC Chair to call for ‘whole system’ approach to tackle serious violence
Ahead of his appearance in front of the Home Affairs Select Committee, APCC Chair and Serious Violence Lead, Mark Burns-Williamson has called for sustainable, longer-term funding to support a ‘whole system’ approach to tackle serious violence. Mr Burns-Williamson said:
“The significant rises in knife and violent crime across the country, particularly involving children and young people, is shattering too many lives in communities across the country.
“Policing requires funding now to tackle violence on our streets and strengthen our focus on prevention. Whilst the funding announced in the Spring Statement is welcome, in that it will support our police to protect our communities and carrying out robust enforcement against offenders, it is ultimately through early intervention and prevention work that we can most effectively tackle knife crime and serious violence.
“Around a third of the Serious Violence Fund is allocated to help set up Violence Reduction Units and other preventative initiatives. This funding should be distributed at the earliest opportunity and we are working with the Home Office and Chief Constables to help coordinate how it is to be spent productively.
“Police and Crime Commissioners have long advocated a whole system approach with focused and properly resourced action across a range of areas, including youth services, schools and the health service. As local leaders we have a key role to play in co-ordinating activity and making this happen.”
On Community Safety Partnerships, Mr Burns-Williamson said:
“The need to reinvigorate work across local partnerships through bodies such as Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs) is key. Any review of the current effectiveness of Community Safety Partnerships should include consideration of a strengthened convening role for PCCs, with a view to improve oversight and impact.”
On the issue of school exclusions, he added:
“PCCs have called for urgent action to address the alarming rise of children and young people being permanently excluded from school in England and Wales. The findings of the delayed Timpson Review should lead to a concerted focus on reducing the use of exclusions for vulnerable young people and improving alternative provision where it is needed.”