On 11 October 2022, in a two-hour webinar, Devon and Cornwall’s Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Crest Advisory provided an overview of what Devon and Cornwall’s Serious Violence Prevention Programme has achieved since its launch. They also looked at how this approach could be adopted in other areas that don’t have a Violence Reduction Unit.
The latter is because these areas still have a relatively low level of serious violence. It’s key to prevent it so that you don’t have to reduce it. That means taking new approaches rather than stick to (and do no more than) what the government prescribes. It requires getting funding and getting various parties to agree, commit and cooperate such as Health, Fire, local government and Justice.
The recording of that discussion is on YouTube. I didn’t listen to the entire video as the discussion is to a large degree about how the programme was set up within the framework that it functions in.
1. Gang injunctions are a civil tool that allows the police or a local authority to
apply to a county court (or the High Court)1 for an injunction against an
individual who has been involved in gang-related violence. Gang
injunctions are provided for in Part 4 of the Policing and Crime act 2009
(“the 2009 Act”).
2. Gang injunctions allow courts to place a range of positive requirements
and prohibitions on the behaviour and activities of an individual where this
is necessary to either or both (a) prevent the individual from engaging,
encouraging, or assisting, gang-related violence (b) protect the individual
from gang-related violence.
3. Gang injunctions for adults have been available since January 2011, and
gang injunctions for 14 to 17 year olds have been available since January
Why has serious violence – violence with injury – been increasing since 2014? Nobody really seems to know… It does, however, also coincide with an increasing number of years of the Conservatives in government and hence with cuts to all sort of services, services that also notably benefit young people.
Time and time again it is found that making people feel seen and heard often makes the difference. They want to feel that they belong and that they matter. They want to have useful things to do. They need to feel that their lives are meaningful.
“In the UK, 39 children and teenagers were killed by knives in 2017.”