Alison Hernandez, Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, has welcomed the Government’s Beating Crime Plan, which was formally unveiled by Prime Minister Boris Johnson recently.
The plan outlines a number of measures including increased electronic tagging for serious offenders, early intervention with young people involved with violence and a trial of alcohol tags for prison leavers who have committed drink-fuelled crimes in Wales.
The plan puts an emphasis on tackling the causes of crime, the most significant of which being drugs. In response to this, the Government has pledged £31 million to expand Project Adder, which offers expanded treatment and recovery services, as well as plans to drug test more offenders when they are arrested.
It also outlines plans to introduce 101 and 999 call league tables to improve responsiveness, £17 million for early intervention with young people exposed to violence, £45 million for specialist teams in schools and Alternative Provision to cut serious violence and pledges 1,000 Civil Service roles for prison leavers by the end of 2023.
Commissioner Hernandez, who is joint national lead for Local Policing and Antisocial Behaviour, said: “Crime destroys lives, ruins neighbourhoods and leaves victims traumatised.
‘I welcome the tough stance on the causes of crime that are outlined in this plan and I am very pleased that the Government is focusing on the issues that communities care about and that affect them on a daily basis.
‘We know drugs and alcohol play a prominent role in some of the most destructive crimes, so tackling these issues head on is vital if we are going to improve our neighbourhoods.
‘The introduction of 999 and 101 league tables is great for transparency and will encourage forces to up their game. 101 times are a national problem and it’s great the Government are playing their part in tackling this issue up and down the country.
‘I welcome the investment in early intervention with young people. We have seen the remarkable benefits of this first-hand with our Turning Corners scheme, which has made a big difference to lives and communities in South Devon.
‘I am also pleased to see an emphasis on securing employment for prison leavers, helping us to break the cycle of criminality that can become an endless downward spiral. ‘Again, we have first-hand knowledge of this right here in Devon where we recently commissioned an affordable eco-home to be constructed by prisoners, erected with the
help of those on probation and used to house vulnerable people in inappropriate housing. By reducing crime, we can help promote safe, prosperous neighbourhoods that boost opportunities and restore people’s faith in their local communities.”