A major campaign to enlist hair and beauty professionals in the effort to tackle domestic abuse has been launched by Northamptonshire Police with support from Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold.
Domestic abuse is a significant issue in Northamptonshire: in May 2019, domestic abuse was 36% of all crime recorded in Northamptonshire.
The new campaign is called #Cutitout, and aims to raise awareness and train salon staff to recognise the warning signs of domestic abuse and safely refer clients to organisations that can help them.
#CutitOut began in Norwich in 2017 when Kerri McAuley was killed by an abusive partner. Kerri had earlier confided in her hairdresser Annie Reilly, and Annie subsequently helped to develop the campaign.
More than 160 professionals from across the county attended the first event.Annie Reilly said:“Every day I think about what I could have done and what difference it could have made.I’m passionate about this campaign because as hairdressers, many of our clients will confide in us and we need to be equipped with the right information so we can help them in the best way.”
The campaign is funded by Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold and Northamptonshire Police. Stephen said that the campaign is part of a wider strategy that brings together the work being done by agencies and voluntary groups to deal with this significant issue.
More than 770 volunteers in 62 groups across Northamptonshire have been helping to improve road safety after taking part in the 2019 Community Speed Watch programme.
Volunteers from 62 Community Speed Watch groups work alongside the Northamptonshire Safer Roads Alliance to reduce speeding across the county.
Community Speed Watch sees residents trained to use speed detection devices to monitor vehicles travelling through their towns and villages on roads with limits of 20, 30 and 40mph.
The registered keeper of any vehicle caught speeding receives a warning letter to increase awareness of the dangers of speeding and encourage them to slow down.
Between April and November, a total of 686 Community Speed Watch sessions were carried out by the groups, which resulted in 4,875 warning letters being sent to drivers caught speeding.
Alongside this, members of the Northamptonshire Police’s Safer Roads Team have completed 756 enforcement sessions in these communities during 2019, which resulted in more than 10,000 offences being detected and processed for prosecution.
The fees paid by speeding motorists who attend speed workshops makes up the Commissioner’s Road Safety Community Fund for good causes.
Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold said:“People have told me that safe and responsible road use is a major concern for them. Community Speed Watch is a great way to get involved and play a part in creating a safer county and I have been privileged to visit several Speed Watch groups to see them in action.”
Organisers of an operation to tackle issues of arson and anti-social behaviour in Daventry are now celebrating the project’s second anniversary.
Operation Unite is run by members of the Daventry District and South Northamptonshire Community Safety Partnership, who include Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) and Northamptonshire Police as well as Daventry District Council and Daventry Town Council.
The operation aims to reduce fire setting and cut anti-social behaviour, reduce issues with rubbish and waste accumulations, give fire prevention advice and work to create a safer environment for all.
Norman James, Watch Manager at Daventry Fire Station, said: “Operation Unite was intended to be one day of action in which multiple partners came together to address issues surrounding deliberate fires in the Daventry area.
“Since then it has grown into a partnership working to help in some of the many social issues affecting communities in Daventry, including everything from educating young people in schools, to speaking to local business owners and community groups, promoting social cohesion.”
ICVs keep watch in Custody
Northamptonshire’s Independent Custody Visitors (ICVs) have contributed over 500 hours of their time in the last 12 months to help maintain the highest standards in the treatment of people detained in Police custody centres in the county.
ICVs are volunteers from the local community who provide an independent and impartial oversight in police custody. They visit the Criminal Justice Centre in Northampton and the Weekley Woods Justice Centre in Kettering every week to check on the welfare of detainees; ensuring they are being fairly and properly treated, and that the conditions they are being held in are satisfactory.
In the last 12 months, ICVs have spent time speaking to 341 detainees in custody, looking at custody records, liaising with custody staff, training and attending meetings to share experiences and feedback.
ICVs raise any issues they come across with Custody staff, to be dealt with at the time of their visit. Any more serious issues are escalated to the PFCC. Examples of where ICVs have effected change in the last year include resolving issues with intercoms in cells and improving health and safety in the food preparation area.
Catherine Broughton, who has been an ICV in Northampton for nine years said: “Generally we feel that custody in Northamptonshire runs smoothly and efficiently. It is a rewarding role to know that we are ensuring people are receiving their rights and entitlements at a time of great vulnerability.”
Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold has a statutory duty to provide the ICV service. He said: “It is important that communities have confidence in their police service, and ICVs help to provide community oversight in custody and transparency in an area of policing that isn’t usually on public view.”
Home protection website launched as part of push on burglary
Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold, in conjunction with Northamptonshire Police, has launched a new home security website as part of the on-going activity to crack down on burglary in Northamptonshire.
The website www.protectyourhomenorthants.co.uk carries information from the Force’s specialist crime prevention officers on how best to protect your home from burglars. Ranging from ways to secure the perimeter of your property to what you can do inside your home to deter burglars, the website is a one-stop-shop for all things home security.
The website is part of the crackdown on burglary that began in April 2019 and has resulted so far in a reduction in the number of burglary offences of more than 30 per cent.As part of the new focus, every burglary victim in Northamptonshire is guaranteed a visit from the police.
The website goes alongside the burglary pack which will be given out to all victims of burglary across Northamptonshire.Both have been created as part of a project funded by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold.
More good causes win funding from Commissioner
Days of actions in Wellingborough, reducing the impact of alcohol-related violence in Corby and slowing traffic to meet a local priority in Moulton are among the latest community projects that have received a funding boost thanks to grants awarded by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold.
Nine groups received grants to the value of £40,000 to carry out projects that make their community safer.
These latest awards mean that more than £120,000 has been given to good causes around the county this year – with a further funding announcement due before the end of 2019.
The Commissioner makes a number of grant funds available for groups to carry out community projects:
Making Northamptonshire Safer Fund gives grants of between £3,000 and £10,000 for initiatives that support the aims of the Police and Crime Plan.
Northamptonshire Road Safety Community Fund gives grants of between £500 and £5,000 for initiatives that support the Strategic Road Safety Plan.
Tackling Hate Crime Fund has a total of £8,000 available and will consider bids of between £1,000 and £8,000 for initiatives that support the Hate Crime Delivery Group priorities.
Small Grants Scheme offers between £500 and £3,000 to allow groups to carry out smaller projects.
Projects given funding in the latest round include days of action in Wellingborough; a Safer Nights Project in Corby Old village; a countywide project to support the well-being of families living with someone affected by substance addiction; a safer driving project for young people; portable speed cameras and speed indicator signs in a number of parish council areas.