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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/crime-and-policing-newsletter-may-2013/crime-and-policing-newsletter-may-2013
0.1 New powers to tackle anti-social behaviour; the community trigger and the community remedy
The community trigger and community remedy are two of the new measures being introduced in the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill.
The community trigger will give people the right to demand that relevant agencies, such as the police or council, deal with reports of persistent anti-social behaviour where they have previously failed to do so. The Home Office has recently published results from trials, which show that the trigger has helped resolve some particularly difficult cases.
The community remedy will give victims of low-level crime and anti-social behaviour a say in the punishment of offenders out of court. The local Police and Crime Commissioner will be responsible for designing a menu of options for the victim to choose from. This could include, for example, reparation to the community or mediation between the victim and the offender.
The Home Office has recently published the results of a consultation exercise on the community remedy. This showed strong support for the new power from the public and key partners.
More information on all the measures in the bill and its passage through parliament can be found on the Parliament website.
0.2 Deputy Prime Minister announces £7m package open to rehabilitation services
In his recent speech at Nacro (a criminal justice charity), the Deputy Prime Minister announced a package of tailored support to help fledgling mutuals and smaller rehabilitation organisations bid for contracts.
The £7 million worth of funds is to help these groups bid and support their work in communities.
He also announced that valuable financial tools, legal advice, coaching and training, and a network of peers and expert contacts will be available to these organisations and groups to help take them through the bidding process.
Read more on the Deputy Prime Minister’s announcement.
0.3 Greater Protection for Householders
The Coalition Agreement contained a commitment to give householders the protection they need to defend themselves from intruders.
The new Crime and Courts Act, which came into effect on 25 April, contains changes which clarify aspects of the law on the use of force. The changes give householders greater protection to defend themselves from intruders.
The Ministry of Justice issued a circular which explains the legislative changes in more detail, to agencies in the criminal justice system and ACPO rank officers. It was also published on the GOV.UK website, together with an MoJ news item.
0.4 Crime Statistics
The latest crime statistics from the Crime Survey for England and Wales were published on 25 April, which show that crime continues to fall.
Crime Prevention Minister Jeremy Browne, said: ‘Crime continues to fall - recorded crime is down by more than 10% under this government and the independent survey shows crime is at its lowest level since records began.
It is particularly encouraging that this downward trend is replicated across every police force in England and Wales. They have shown an impressive ability to accommodate necessary budget reductions whilst still cutting crime.’
You can also read our news story.
0.5 National Crime Agency update
There are just four months to go until the National Crime Agency (NCA) goes live.
The Crime and Courts Bill, which contains the legal provisions for the Agency, received Royal Assent on 25 April, and the Agency was vested on 27 May. It has also been announced that Jeremy Outen, formerly a forensic accountant with KPMG, had been appointed Director Designate of the Economic Crime Command; and Phil Gormley, the Chief Constable of Norfolk Constabulary, will become the Deputy Director General. Finally, the SOCA cyber crime team has fully transitioned into the shadow National Cyber Crime Unit (NCCU).
The NCA continues working in shadow form, to test how it will begin to operate in advance of it going fully live later in October. It has already achieved some operational successes, including a multi-agency operation developed by the shadow Economic Crime Command which resulted in the disruption of an Organised Crime Group engaged in Pensions Liberation Fraud.
The policy for organised crime is now being managed alongside counter-terrorism as part of a broader Office for Security and Counter Terrorism (OSCT) within the Home Office. This move brings with it many benefits, including learning the lessons from the delivery of CONTEST, the government’s counter-terrorism strategy.
0.6 National Police Coordination Centre
The Policing Minister Damian Green opened the new National Police Coordination Centre (NPoCC) on 23 April. Replacing the Police National Information and Co-ordination Centre, NPoCC will help police forces across the country coordinate their resources to effectively respond to civil emergencies and cross-border policing issues. You can read a Home Office news story and the ACPO media centre article for further details.
0.7 Police Pay Review Body Consultation response
On 25 April, the Home Secretary announced the government’s response to the police pay review body consultation in Parliament, with a Written Ministerial Statement.
The new body, which will be called the Police Remuneration Review Body (PRRB), will be established by late 2014, and will take as wide a view of police remuneration as possible, to act in a strategic, forward looking manner and not be constrained by the inefficiencies of the current system.
0.8 Consultation on proposals to allow law enforcement agencies to seize and detain ‘cutting agents’ launched
The Government’s 2010 Drug Strategy made a commitment to address the trade in “cutting agents”; chemical substances that can be used for bulking illegal drugs. The use of cutting agents by criminals to increase their profits is a matter of great concern.
On 28 May, a consultation proposing new powers to allow law enforcement agencies to seize and detain chemical substances suspected of being used for bulking illegal drugs was launched.
The proposals will enable law enforcement agencies to enter and search premises for cutting agents, and to seize and detain any such specified chemical substances that are reasonably suspected of being intended for illegal use (i.e. drug trafficking).
More information on the specific proposals to introduce these new powers is available in the full consultation document.
0.9 Review of the Riots Damages Act announced
The government has launched an independent review into the Riot Damages Act, to ensure it protects the vulnerable and provides value for money. The review will also examine the existing criteria which determines when compensation is payable.
This includes key issues such as the definition of a riot, who should be liable and what level of compensation is suitable. The review, which will be lead by former senior civil servant Neil Kinghan, should conclude by September, and will be followed by a public consultation.
You can also read our news story.
0.10 Missing Children and Adults Roundtable
The Crime Prevention Minister Jeremy Browne chaired the second Missing Children and Adults Roundtable on 30 April. This meeting was well attended by other Government departments and key stakeholders from the third sector.
The main outcomes were: an agreement to continue the focus on child vulnerabilities; an additional focus on adult mental health; the development of innovative multi-agency approaches; agree ways of delivery through Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards and Safeguarding Adults Boards; and how to engage with Health and Welfare Boards and Police and Crime Commissioners.
0.11 International Missing Children’s Day
International Missing Children’s Day (IMCD) took place on 25 May 2013. Various organisations carried out a range of activities to mark the day and celebrate successes since the publication of the Government’s Missing Children and Adults Strategy in December 2011.
Also as part of IMCD, the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre and the charity Parents and Abducted Children Together published their joint report “Taken – A Study of Child Abduction in the UK” on 23 May. The report provides the most wide-ranging research into the extent and prevalence of child abduction in all its forms ever undertaken in the UK.
0.12 Communications channels survey
The Home Office uses a range of channels to communicate with you and other partners. We would like to know what you think of our communications. We have produced a survey, the findings of which will help shape how we communicate with you in the future. We’d really appreciate your views. If you can spare 10 minutes you can take part in our survey online, and you will also be able to save your response partway through and come back to it if necessary.
The Home Secretary’s speech to the Police Federation 15 May
Damian Green Minister for Policing speech to the Police Federation 14 May
Deputy Prime Minister’s speech on crime and rehabilitation 20 May