POLICE and council chiefs are uniting in a ground-breaking partnership to help tackle crime.
Chief Inspector Paul McCurry of South Yorkshire Police has been appointed as the joint Head of Community Safety across both authorities.
This is the first appointment of its kind in the country aiming to reduce anti-social behaviour and the number of victims of crime.
The role is also to bring police and council together in tackling gun, knife and gang crime and domestic abuse.
Chief Insp McCurry said: “Obviously I am delighted to have been given this new role. I now need to deliver for the city, making sure the council and the police are side by side standing up for local people.
“I want to use my role to expand on the great work that has already been done in order for Sheffield to remain a safe city.
“I want to get into the heart of local communities to work with the people who live and work there.
“It is especially important to make sure we help the most vulnerable people and work around breaking the cycle of crime.
“This can only be done with a proper support network with both police, council and community involvement.
“This could be working with head teachers, community groups and youth club leaders as well as local residents.
“By teaming up we can effectively target resources to work in the best way for the people who experience or fear crime.”
A fancy description for an old fashioned principle.
Back in the day it meant a clip round the ear by a neighbour or a copper and a word with your mum and dad – and in many cases another clip round the ear.
Today it means something different but the spirit of common sense prevails.
“Officers are today trained in restorative justice methods which means dealing with problems as they come up rather than putting people through the court system,” said Chief Inspector Paul McCurry, South Yorkshire Police’s new Head of Community Safety
“Police can now take a decision in the street and deal with matters there and then if that’s appropriate.
“If an apology and a promise to make amends seems appropriate officers are allowed to take perpetrators to their victims for low level crimes,” said Chief Insp McCurry.
“I am really proud of Sheffield and proud of its reputation as the safest city in the country. I will be striving to help us maintain and improve on that status.
“Things are not getting worse, as some seem to believe.
“There are bound to be peaks and troughs in crime but things are actually getting better for a lot of people.”
His statement is borne out by Victim Support, the charity that helps people pick up the pieces after a crime.
“The statistics show that crime has been decreasing for over a decade now, apart from rape and sexual assault which have gone up, it is believed, because people are more likely to report those offences than in the past.” said a spokesman