This week is National Neighbourhood Policing Week of Action – a week to recognise the crucial role neighbourhood policing has in keeping our communities safe.
Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner, Katy Bourne OBE, talks about this and other issues:
I know from my frequent consultations with residents and local organisations just how much they value visible neighbourhood policing. That is why I have enabled Sussex Police to invest in additional PCSOs and police officers as well as encouraged increased engagement with local councils, residents and businesses.
Having already recruited 182 additional officers, Sussex Police have extended the deadline for their recent recruitment drive so that they can reach as many new and diverse potential future officers as possible.
Earlier this week, the Rural Crime team, Roads Policing Unit and the Specialist Enforcement Unit (SEU) joined regional colleagues to carry out a night of action where they focused on tackling rural crime and criminals using the road network.
It was very encouraging to see Sussex collaborating with forces in Kent and Hampshire to make the South East a hostile place for criminal gangs.
Police stopped 40 vehicles and talked with drivers about crime in their areas and made several arrests. This successful operation will reassure residents that all three forces work around the clock to prevent crime and pursue offenders.
The festive season was a busy time for Sussex officers who made 257 arrests as part of their crackdown on drink and drug driving which ran from 1 Dec to 1 Jan. This is a 20% increase on last year’s arrests and whilst this is a great example of proactive policing preventing dangerous activity on our roads, it’s unnerving to see there is still a minority of people risking their own and others’ lives through their actions.
During the week, we also saw calls in Parliament for an urgent review into the prevalence of drink and injection spiking offences and further support for misogyny to be officially considered as an aggravating factor in offences as MPs, Lords and experts explore what could be achieved through legislation or guidance.
The funding my office secured last November continues to go towards extra police patrols and street pastors at night, identifying safe spaces for those at risk, training for businesses and education tools to help passive observers challenge intimidation, abuse and violence.