Our police force’s improving performance on cutting crime – which means fewer victims – bodes well for a safer Nottinghamshire in the years to come.
Even one victim is one too many, so I am greatly encouraged by latest figures that show crime has fallen since I took office in 2012. A great deal of work has gone into tackling all crime across the county, and the predictions for the end of year results are looking very positive. Most importantly, public satisfaction has increased.
In the year to December 2015, Nottinghamshire Police was ranked in the top five forces nationally for reductions in crime, house burglary, robbery and public order. When I became your PCC, anti-social behaviour was a particular thorn in the side of too many residents. But this, too, has now fallen.
Although latest figures for violence actually show an increase, this reflects changes to the way such crimes are counted. You would perhaps, like me, expect violence to involve physical harm, but we now have to include offences which don’t necessarily involve actually touching someone. Efforts to encourage reporting of domestic and hate crimes have also contributed to this rise. Under-reported offences include hate crime, domestic abuse and sexual violence – all of them unacceptable behaviour that put people in fear. I therefore urge victims to report the perpetrators and accept the emotional and practical support that is available to help them.
Overall, since 2012, it’s been a positive picture, despite the added challenges brought by diminishing funding and resources. There is, of course, more to be done in reducing both crime and victims, but corners have been turned.
I’m very aware that there is never room for complacency where crime and victims are concerned, and we will continue to target our resources where they are most needed. This includes developing new and enhanced projects to tackle issues such as public order offences with local partners.
With resources and funding a continuing challenge for the force, we will be reducing the numbers of higher ranking officers from inspectors upwards. As part of this move, Nottinghamshire Police has reviewed its neighbourhood policing structures to enable further integration with key partners and stronger partnership working. Redeployment of a tier of
middle management neighbourhood policing will, at the same time, bolster frontline policing.
From February, local area commands in the county of Nottinghamshire (not including Nottingham city) will be reduced from 12 to seven, each one covering the same geographical area as the district and borough councils. This will allow local area commanders to allocate resources more effectively, strengthen our work with local authorities and community safety
partnerships, and do all we can to reap the benefits on your behalf.