South Yorkshire Police awarded £1 million to steer young people away from violence
South Yorkshire Police has been awarded £1 million to try to steer young people away from violence.
The Home Office has awarded grants to fund targeted action in violence ‘hotspots’.
The funding for violence reduction units across the country comes ahead of the introduction of a major criminal justice bill, which will give police new stop and search powers to tackle known knife and weapons carriers and place a duty on public sector bodies – including police, education and health agencies – to take a joined-up approach to addressing serious violence.
South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Dr Alan Billings, has welcomed the additional funding, with South Yorkshire one of 18 forces to benefit.
It is on top of £1.6 million announced last month to fund the work of the South Yorkshire Violence Reduction Unit to deliver coordinated action to tackle serious violence by seeking to find ways of stopping young people being exposed to or drawn into violence and to help those who have been involved in violence to turn their lives around.
Dr Billings said: “As I understand it the money is to be made available but we will have to submit a proposal as to how it will be used. If successful, this money combined with the additional officers we are recruiting in South Yorkshire should help to make a significant difference, and to make up for ground that was undoubtedly lost during the years when the police grant and officer numbers were continually being cut.
“However, we need to be careful that additional police overtime does not lead to a tired workforce that has been working flat out for the last year to cope with the additional burdens of policing the pandemic and all the emergency laws and regulations.
“The government are developing habits of throwing pots of money at problems from time to time and this is not the best way of solving issues as important as serious violence. We need an assured income over longer periods of time so that sound strategic plans can be made.”
To pass on information about those involved in violent crime call 101.