Safer Neighbourhood Team
Talk about priorities and plans for the coming months and Q & A session with Inspector Lee Pointon.
Inspector Lee Pointon introduced himself and two members of his team: Sergeant Colin Sutherland and PCSO Katie Dale. Inspector Pointon outlined details of the local policing team before updating the meeting with information about priorities and plans for the forthcoming months.
Inspector Pointon explained the aims and successes of Operation Liberate in tackling anti-social behaviour (“ASB”), outlining how the initiative involves working in partnership with various bodies including the NHS, York City FC Foundation and the Youth Offending Team, amongst others. A high visibility police presence visits areas of known ASB where individuals are engaged with at various levels, including identifying vulnerable young people and taking them to a place of safety. Partnership organisations can then follow up with positive action to help break the cycle of ASB. The Operation proved to be a success last year and is to be repeated again this summer.
In addition, Operation Joypad will also run over the summer months to raise awareness of how burglars operate and provide security advice, thus reducing resident vulnerability to this type of crime.
In response to a query, Inspector Pointon explained that if residents wish to report a non-emergency, they should use the 101 phone number and report the issue to the control room rather than asking for a specific officer. Alternatively they could send an email to the generic address email@example.com .These messaging systems are usually checked twice daily and actioned appropriately.
Unfortunately, messages left with a named officer cannot be guaranteed to be picked up in that officer’s absence.
It was recognised that the 101 system is not without its limitations.
Residents were encouraged to report incidents of ASB on the basis that if the police don’t know about it, they can’t do anything. Inspector Pointon further explained that residents may not always be aware of a police presence as officers may be in plain clothes or in an unmarked vehicle.
In an emergency situation, residents should call 999.
In response to concerns that the ward had lost the continuity provided by a dedicated PCSO, Inspector Pointon explained that the area was now covered by a team of PCSOs, meaning that the police could provide continuous cover whereas previously none was available during an officer’s rest period.
Inspector Pointon welcomed the idea of having access to the Osbaldwick Sports Club to use as a ‘refreshment stop’ for officers. He will investigate the idea further, including the potential for extending it to create community engagement events. Murton Church would also be similarly available. Cllr Warters commented that Dunnington Parish Council may wish to make similar provision and suggested that Inspector Pointon may wish to explore this initiative in other areas of the city.
ACTION: Michal Czekajlo to provide a list of parish council emails to Inspector Pointon.
In response to a query regarding the timeliness of police communications, Inspector Pointon outlined details of the new Community Messaging service. Parish clerks will receive an email on the first Monday of each month detailing anything relevant from the previous four weeks, providing notifications of forthcoming events and giving recipients the opportunity to raise any concerns they may have. The system is intended to improve local communications and encourage a 2-way dialogue.
Cllr Warters thanked Inspector Pointon and his team for their contribution to the meeting and their continued support.