Gwent secures almost £750,000 in additional funding to help tackle anti-social behaviour and neighbourhood crime
Gwent Police will be working with community groups across its force area as part of plans to deter anti-social behaviour (ASB) through a range of diversionary tactics.
The £746,702 from the Home Office’s Safer Streets fund will be used by the service to tackle ASB and other offences like burglary, robbery and theft.
This represents the largest sum the force has received from the Safer Streets fund.
The funding will be used across six areas in Gwent – Alway in Newport, Blackwood, Brynmawr, Caldicot, Cwmbran and Tredegar.
As part of the bid, Gwent Police will work with partners from the local authority and other organisations to introduce measures aiming to increase public safety.
Deputy Chief Constable Amanda Blakeman said: “Everyone has a right to feel safe in the areas in which they live, and we continue with our commitment to protecting and reassuring our communities.
“This funding will prove essential in supporting this work, allowing us and partners to invest in education and engagement and introduce further measures to tackle neighbourhood crime.
“We’ll continue to bring those intent on causing harm and disorder in Gwent to justice.
“But this new funding allows us to invest in engagement opportunities across the force area in order to support those at risk of committing anti-social behaviour in the future, change attitudes and behaviours and increase public safety.
“These diversionary activities take people away from situations which might encourage disorderly behaviour, teach people about the impact their behaviour can have on their neighbours and towns and promote a real sense of pride in the community.
“Additionally, the installation of CCTV cameras in towns like Blackwood will help increase safety, while the delivery of property marking kits and installation of home security improvements will help residents keep themselves, their loved ones and valuables safe.”
As part of the proposal, some areas will see educational youth outreach programmes delivered by youth workers at new or refurbished youth shelters, giving young people a safe place to go.
Engagement sessions will also be hosted from these youth shelters, as well as a new, state-of-the-art vehicle equipped with the latest gaming technology.
Police and Crime Commissioner Jeff Cuthbert is also an Association of Police and Crime Commissioner’s lead for ASB. He said: “To effectively tackle ASB we must take a partnership approach. The mobile gaming vehicle will act as a focal point for officers and our partners to engage with young people, offering advice and guidance, and raise awareness around the impact of knife crime, substance abuse and vandalism.
“People have told us that CCTV in their communities would help them to feel safer and so the money will also be used to install additional CCTV cameras in key locations.
“We must be clear that tackling ASB must begin at home but this funding gives us some further tools to build on the great work that is already going on across Gwent to protect our communities.”
Previous Safer Streets projects delivered in Gwent have seen the force increase home security across Pillgwenlly and Rhymney, and tackle violence against women and girls in Newport and Abergavenny.