Celebrating the Success of Safer Streets 4

Last week, Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne and her team hosted an event to celebrate and reflect upon all the work successfully facilitated by monies awarded from the Safer Streets 4 Fund.

The Government launched the first ever Safer Streets Fund in 2020 and, since then, it has invested £125 million nationally via four rounds. With the additional funding now allocated to Round 5, it brings the total that Police & Crime Commissioners (PCCs) and police forces can access to £167million, supporting over 400 projects across England and Wales.

PCC Katy Bourne opened the event by highlighting that Sussex have been successful in securing funding through every round of Safer Streets, recognising the excellent multi-agency working that has taken place to achieve this.

The event was a celebration of the successful outcomes achieved and how various schemes had witnessed positive changes within their local community. We heard from: Sussex Police; East Sussex County Council; Safer East Sussex Team; 3VA; Bognor Regis Business Improvement District; West Sussex community safety team; Life Centre; ESX; Crawley Borough Council; The Safer Hastings and Rother Partnership; and Meditation Alliance.

Life Centre received funding to educate and train adults in the harm of toxic masculinity and misogyny and to support children and young people who are exposed to and impacted by it. This built upon existing work with the University of Chichester delivering training to encourage people to be an “upstander rather than a bystander.” Feedback from the teachers involved showed that 100% either ‘strongly agreed’ or ‘agreed’ that the training had provided them with practical tools to use with young people and improved confidence in their understanding of sexual violence.

Active Youth Fishing Project started in 2020 and was supported by Safer Streets 4 funding for the past 18 months, helping over 200 young people including prolific community offenders. The Active Youth Fishing team aim to engage with a further 80 young people and to roll the project out across the county.

Operation Action was hosted in Brighton and Hove with Sussex Police conducting visible hotspot patrols in high harm areas between the hours 20:00-04:00 on Friday and Saturday nights. Officers would provide guidance and help to those in need such as directing individuals to the Safe Space Sussex directory, working with Night Wardens and Street Pastors to keep people safe.

Night Marshals and Taxi Marshals were funded for Crawley town centre in order to protect individuals enjoying a night out.  This was paired with investment in improved CCTV to tackle areas seeing high levels of drug dealing and anti-social behaviour.

There has been additional Government money awarded to Sussex from the Safety of Women at Night (SWAN) Fund - dedicated to tackling violence against women and girls and protecting those in the night-time economy. This included: a drone for beach patrols in Brighton; additional CCTV and foot patrols; educational programmes for young people; and provided dedicated co-ordinators on each policing division to protect women and girls.

Speaking about the event, Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “The work that has taken place using funding awarded from Safer Streets 4 has made a real difference to our local communities. It is reassuring to see so many agencies working together to protect people in Sussex, particularly women and girls at night, and knowing that our residents and visitors will receive the best service possible. I will also continue to work with the group to make these results sustainable for the longer term.”

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