Sussex Police re-opened officer recruitment this week. They are aiming to attract 200 police officers each year for the next four years. This has been made possible by the public’s support to pay more for local policing.
The majority of Sussex residents who responded to the precept consultation said they were prepared to pay more. Protecting neighbourhood policing is a top priority because it matters so much to local people. It’s about keeping the community in policing and the police in the community, providing a reassuring police presence.
The additional funding that the rise in the police precept gives us also means the force has to save less money over the coming years so we can protect 476 police posts that would otherwise have been lost.
Sussex Police want to ensure that the organisation reflects the communities it serves so I would really encourage more applications from our diverse communities and of course more applications from women.
New recruits will be joining at a challenging time for policing and a transformative time for Sussex Police. The application window is open until midnight Monday 5 March. Find out more by visiting http://www.sussex.police.uk/jobs/police-officers/
Tackling knife crime
This week sees the launch of a national campaign to tackle knife crime and highlight the risks with carrying a knife. Op Sceptre is a countrywide operation, led by the Metropolitan Police, which aims to reduce the number of people, especially young people, who carry a weapon.
Its repercussions have devastating effects on families and our wider community. Sussex Police are taking an active part in the national campaign and that Prevention Youth Officers are working with partner organisations to engage with young people and push home this message.
Katy Bourne says: “Although the level of knife crime in Sussex is low, we must not be complacent and this is why I will continue to monitor crime reports and trends from across the county and, when necessary, press the Chief Constable and senior officers during my webcast accountability meetings to seek assurances that Sussex Police are working proactively with partners to tackle any issues.
On a national level, I fully support the proposed changes to tighten the law, that include restrictions, or a ban, on under-18s being able to purchase knives, and having to collect, in person, any knives ordered online, so that age can be verified. With my fellow PCCs, I will also be contributing to the Home Secretary’s new strategy to tackle violent crime which will be developed over the coming months.”
One in five women and one in ten men will experience stalking in their lifetime. Last year, Sussex Police received more than 200 reports of stalking and some believe this is just the tip of the iceberg. Katy Bourne has invested in funding for Veritas Justice so they can provide a county-wide service that directly supports victims and trains police officers. In the past year alone they have seen a 300% increase in referrals.
Katy Bourne says: “Sussex Police, like many other police forces, has made some critical errors when dealing with stalking cases and this is why I will continue to drive the change locally, with significant improvements in partnership working between the police and CPS and, nationally, with my PCC colleagues. I want to see Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners take a greater interest in stalking and understand that, rather than treating each individual report as a separate case, they need to look for the patterns in this type of behaviour. Over the coming weeks I will keep you updated on my work to improve the support for victims of stalking.”