I’d like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a peaceful festive period and a happy New Year.
2018 has been another very busy year. I have been pleased to continue the Safer Communities Fund which has given out grants totalling more than £372,000 to more than 85 organisations, with the latest round having a specific focus on tackling violent crime, which is very timely.
I have focused on providing the utmost care for victims of crime, and commissioned the Victim Support service with extended access to young people, as well as adults.
I have also commissioned a Restorative Justice Programme which brings those harmed by crime, and those responsible for that harm, into communication with each other. This contact can offer victims the opportunity to be heard, to ask questions of the offender, and to have their say in the resolution.
Looking forward to 2019, we have received £1m from the Early Intervention Youth Fund for projects to help divert mainly children and young people away from violent crime, the results of which I will be watching closely.
Securing the best funding deal we can for policing is top of the agenda and I will be continuing to lobby the government directly to achieve the resources that we desperately need to rebuild frontline police over the coming years.
I’d like to recognise and say an extra thank you to all policing and the emergency service staff who will be sacrificing time with loved ones over the festive period to continue to keep us all safe, thank you, you are in our thoughts and it is appreciated.
Have a great Christmas and a fantastic New Year.