Concerns over crime and anti-social behaviour in Newhaven have prompted
the launch of a multi-agency team to tackle the issues involved.
Organised by Lewes district Police Inspector Ed Ripley, and supported by other professionals, the problem-solving pilot scheme went live during the first weekend of August.
The team, made up of Police Community Support Officers, Neighbourhood First and Housing Team members from Lewes District Council, East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, the Sussex Community Development Association and Target Youth Support youth outreach team and the domestic abuse Rita Project, will work out of Saxon House, Newhaven, and work together at designated patrols around hot-spot areas across Newhaven.
Inspector Ripley said: “How we operate together and the team dynamics will evolve as we go along, but I hope that by the end of the school summer holidays we will have a better understanding of how this will work.
“Officers will identify hot-spots around Newhaven and problem-solve those locations where the presence and behaviour of young people impacts on the community. The team can also be deployed to deal with other issues in the town, acting spontaneously if required.”
The team met on Monday (19th August) to review their work over the last week, and to discuss their findings, share outcomes, and to agree their aims for the coming weeks.
Last week teams patrolled from Saxon House paying attention to the Quayside, through the Pump Track and along Fort Road; fewer reports of anti-social behaviour in the area we received this week, and have had some positive engagement with some individuals who are known to cause some of the problems in Newhaven.
Working closely with Neighbourhood First has already yielded some positive results and information received from the local community regarding offending in the area. Just this week there have been 9 referrals to housing authorities after confirming the involvement of their tenants in anti-social behaviour and crime.
Part of this new approach, is to not only tackle crime and disorder, but also to look at underlying influences such as housing, environment and domestic stability, each of which are factors that may contribute to an individual’s behaviour.
Sussex Community Development Association (SCDA) and Targeted Youth Support (TYS) are working closer together in our hot-spot locations to engage with young people who could benefit from diversionary schemes and local activities. A new Youth centre is already under construction, with building works beginning the first week of September and a completion date of early October.
Members of the newly formed Multi-Agency Problem Solving Team attended Newhaven Youth Group on Friday evening (16th August). They were accompanied by our CrimeStoppers ‘Anti-Knife Crime’ van, to raise awareness around knife crime and to explain the dangers and consequences around carrying knives. The important message was that not only does it impact on them but it also impacts on their families, friends and their future.
Young people and adults told us about the challenges they face around talking about knives; peer pressure was a big issue. Officers gained valuable intelligence too which used to assist the teams to direct their future patrols, as well as building a picture around where knife related incidents may occur.
We rely on you to let us know what’s going on in your area. Your information enables us to direct our patrols and activity in the right areas within your communities. So, we would like to hear from you; in particular, your thoughts on our newly introduced Multi-Agency Problem Solving Team, information around upcoming events in the Newhaven area, or groups you run locally.