As announced in October 2019, the UK government has created a safer streets fund in order to tackle problems involving burglary and theft. The aim of this fund is to stop offences that harm communities and cause hardship amongst victims of these types of offences.
There will be improvements in security in areas that are badly affected by crimes such as burglary, vehicle theft and robbery. With grants of up to £550,000 being provided to PCCs in England and Wales the hope is to provide an increase in security and protection and cut crime dramatically. Part of this funding will also be used for training community wardens, for delivering local crime prevention advice to residents and establishing Neighbourhood Watch Schemes. All of which will work towards creating safer neighbourhoods for people.
A bidding process was established and bids were evaluated against a set criteria. All bidders were asked to create a brief plan on how they would reduce crime in order to demonstrate the value for money, evidence of community and long-term engagement. Each initiative that is rolled out will be assessed, this is to inform future investments into crime reduction.
The changes being made will be small but effective. Simple changes such as CCTV installations, improved home security, increased street lighting as well as providing residents with advice on crime prevention to help them help themselves stay safe.
Home Secretary Priti Patel has said he “will not stand by while criminals inflict fear and misery on our communities.” Roger Hirst and Keith Hunter, Crime Commissioners from the Association of Police from Crime Prevention Leeds have said that the “Safer Streets Fund announcement represents positive news for communities across England and Wales.”
The government seems determined to create safer streets for neighbourhoods, reduce crime and overall help residents feel safe and secure in their own homes.