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Police Commissioner partners with Crimestoppers creating new Youth Outreach Jobs

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As part of the Serious Violence Strategy, in April of this year the Home Office allocated £1.3m to Sussex Police to target serious violence. £390k of this funding has now been allocated to Police & Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne’s office to expand her REBOOT programme.

For the first time in Sussex, the Police, NHS Partnership Trust, Youth Offending Service and local charities are now working together to provide a referral pathway for young people who show early indicators of serious violence.

In just three months there have been over 200 referrals. As part of this expansion, the PCC is partnering with the Crimestoppers charity under their ‘Fearless’ youth brand.

Their work is focused on helping young people make informed decisions about reporting crime.

They are now able to recruit three Fearless Outreach Workers who will engage with 11-16-year olds, from across Sussex, to increase their awareness of knife crime, street crime and child sexualexploitation.

Glenys Balchin, Surrey and Sussex Regional Manager for the charity Crimestoppers, said:

“We have a really important message: we don’t want any young person to live with, or be in fear of crime. So, we provide awareness workshops and the ability to report crime anonymously. 

Fearless is recruiting three full time outreach workers to deliver this message to young people across Sussex. This would not be possible without the support from Mrs Bourne who shares in our commitment to educate young people to make informed decisions that have positive outcomes.

Katy Bourne, Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner, said:

“Too often vulnerable young people become prime targets for organised crime groups. As a result, knife crime, drug-related crime and anti-social behaviour are starting to increase. We cannot arrest our way out of this societal issue.

We must instead: educate young people on the seriousness of these crimes; teach them how to spot the warning signs of potentially dangerous situations; and arm them with the confidence to report crime.“I’m pleased that the programme is expanding already and working with successful crime prevention partners like Crimestoppers charity to support these messages across Sussex. If you have a background of working with young people I encourage you to apply for one of these unique and impactful roles.”

Here is the role description from the Crimestoppers website: Working 37.5 hours per week, you will work with young people in a variety of settings including schools and youth groups delivering age-appropriate workshops.  So, we are looking for people who are dynamic, passionate and have a natural ability to engage with young people.

Alongside this you will contribute to our professionals training – we’ve already trained 2,000 professionals to deliver the Fearless message to the young people that they work with, and we want to expand this effort across Sussex.

For more information, or to apply please email your CV and covering letter to recruitment@crimestoppers-uk.org  or contact 0208 835 3700.

Crimestoppers encourages people from diverse backgrounds to apply. Applications close: 18th July 2019.

More information on the role can be found on the Crimestoppers website here: https://crimestoppers-uk.org/about-the-charity/work-with-us/current-vacancies

Community

Crawley library in danger of losing opening hours as County Council choose money saving over services

Another public consultation and this time it is about reducing opening hours for the library.

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Crawley library users are being asked to share their thoughts on proposed budget savings which would see a reduction in opening hours at Crawley Library.

The consultation running from 9 October to 13 November 2019 is, according to the council, aimed to help inform the decision due to be taken by West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member, Jacquie Russell, in November. 

The suggested savings include for Crawley to:

Reduce the evening opening hours in the library by one hour (from 7pm to 6pm) from April 2020.

This change, along with the same reduction in hours at three other Sussex libraries along with the ceasing of the mobile library service would apparently result in a total year on year saving of £175,000.

Jacquie Russell, Cabinet Member for Fire and Rescue and Communities, said:

“Since becoming cabinet member, I have often been asked about what will happen to libraries across the county. As I have said before, we need to look at doing things in a more affordable way, but ultimately my aim is to preserve the core of the library service.

“With the suggested savings being proposed, we hope that the other services we have on offer at libraries across West Sussex will diminish any negative impact to users. 

“However, I still want to hear the thoughts of our library users by way of this consultation, especially those who are specifically affected by the proposed budget savings, as this will help to shape and inform my decision in November.”

But Crawley residents will be all too wary of consultations and how they can be just lip service and completely ignored as recently happened with the consulation over the Post Office move into County Mall.

Crawley MP Henry Smith said:

“When West Sussex County Council Leader over a decade ago, I was pleased to procure and open the new Crawley Library, which ever since has been an important community resource. I would encourage all who care about our library to engage with the Council’s consultation and call for evening opening hours not to be reduced.”

You have until 13 November 2019 to have your say.

To find out more and fill in the consultation, visit haveyoursay.westsussex.gov.uk/libraries/libraryoffer/

CN24 approached Jacquie Russell for a guarantee that if the results of the consultation came back that there was a majority against the reduction in hours that she would keep the library open till 7. A response has not yet been received.

But West Sussex County Council did respond saying:

“This is a live consultation and we encourage residents to have their say before the deadline of 13 November. After the consultation has closed, the responses will be taken into consideration before any decision is made.”

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