Agenda item - Community Safety and Crime in Brighton and Hove

skip navigation and tools

Agenda item

Community Safety and Crime in Brighton and Hove

A report of the Executive Director of Neighbourhoods, Communities and

Housing (copy attached)

Decision:

RESOLVED: That the Committee agreed to the recommendations of the report as follows:

 

1.    To note and comment on the information contained in the report which provides an update on work being undertaken by the Community Safety Team in relation to the Community Safety Team in relation to the Community Safety and Crime Reduction Strategy 2017 – 20.

 

2.    To give its continued support to the partnership work described in the report and to work described which is within the council’s remit, thereby contributing to the management of crime and community safety priorities for the city.

 

3.    To roll out the Trans Awareness Training recommended by the Trans Scrutiny Panel to new councillors as soon as possible as part of the current Member Development Package, given the sharp rise in recorded hate crime against our trans community both locally and nationally.

 

Minutes:

8.1      Jo Player, Head of Safer Communities briefly summarised the report and asked for any questions from the Committee.

 

8.2      Councillor Powell presented the Green group’s Amendment which focussed on the trans community, since she stated that the BBC had stated that hate crime against the transgender community was currently up by 81%. She confirmed that the training for councillors was amazing and that everyone should be involved in this, with the scrutiny work involved had taken 3 years to complete. The Amendment was seconded by Councillor Ebel.

 

8.3      There was then a long discussion on this report and its subject matter with questions and points raised by the following councillors and answered by the Head of Safer Communities and Superintendent De La Rue, Sussex Police:

 

8.4      Councillor Simson was concerned about the increase in crime raised in the report and noted that it mentioned the decrease in homophobic incidents which was not in line with her own information on this subject.  She asked the following 2 questions:  1. Regarding para 3.14 regarding Community Protection Notices that the police have had power to use since 2017. – Have these been used and why were incidents increasing?  Secondly, in connection with crimes reported in the St James St area, how are police recording homophobic crime incidents?

 

8.5      The Head of Safer Communities stated the they continued to liaise with the social landlord to engage and use the powers, citing Pete Wong and the Community Safety meetings who were working on this. Superintendent De La Rue confirmed that Sussex Police were working with a perception-based approach – so if someone felt that the crime was homophobic in nature, the police undertook it as this. He also confirmed that there had to be evidence to support this, but that this was separate from the way it was recorded.

 

8.6      Jo Martindale stated that H angleton & Knoll had been successful in getting funding from the Home office to pay for youth coaches to assist with these problems since the hope was to catch young people before they resorted to crime.  She confirmed that they had shown a £3 investment for every £1 of funding.

 

8.7      Councillor Clare asked 2 questions:  Firstly about ASB figures, she asked how secure these figures were.  And secondly, she queried what the Week of Action around County Lines entailed.

 

8.8.     The Head of Safer Communities stated that the Week of Action had just finished, which had included a series of events including one for taxi drivers, which was really positive.  She confirmed that they hoped to run similar events each year.

 

8.9      Superintendent De La Rue said it was important for people to get support who needed it, around County Lines and gave the example of cuckoo cars where criminals had taken over the home of a vulnerable person and explained Sussex police’s method of dealing with this and that they had arrested 35 people in connection with this.  He answered about the ASB issues that there had been a swing between crime and non-crime elements and that this was a judgement to be made by the police and not the public.  He confirmed that the 101-telephone line was challenging when busy but that there were other ways of reporting including online reporting.

 

8.10    Councillor Moonan highlighted the fact that with Councillor Powell they had worked a lot on councillor training and that the LGBT and trans training was on the agenda and she hoped that this would receive a good turnout across the 54 councillors.  Regarding the report she highlighted the problem with the austerity cuts to this budget and how it was linked to increased crime.  She also referred to Councillor Clare’s point on reporting fatigue and highlighted the post of the modern slavery co-ordinator, which she felt was important.

 

8.11    The Head of Safer Communities explained the history of appointing the Modern Slavery Co-ordinator post and that it was important for staff to be able to recognise the signs of slavery and trafficking.  Superintendent De La Rue stated that it was important that this issue was reported to the police. Regarding the reporting fatigue, he confirmed that victims should report to the police but also engage with the stakeholder teams where it may be an issue for the broader community.

 

8.12    Anusree Biswas stated that hate crime was difficult to record and that it was important to examine all the statistics around this.

 

8.13    The Head of Safer Communities highlighted the Community Safety Strategy for 2020 where the statistics should be collected and analysed.

 

8.14    Councillor Ebel asked whether there would be extra funding available for reporting, citing the high number of non-reported domestic violence - DV cases on page 32.

 

8.15    Superintendent De La Rue replied that he currently had no further information on funding and would follow this up going forward.

 

8.16    The Executive Director – Neighbourhoods, Communities & Housing stated that funding had been increased with funding going to Rise and that no-one felt that there was enough money spent in this area and that this would be discussed at Budget Council.

 

8.17    Councillor Bagaeen said he wanted to highlight some issues re: paragraph 3.16 and 3.22 and it was unclear which crime figures had increased and which had decreased.  He was unhappy with the figure of 10 % less racist incidents mentioned in the report and also asked about how the police and council had tackled the modern slavery trafficking in the Circus Street raid.

 

8.18    The Executive Director – Neighbourhoods, Communities & Housing replied that the Council had tightened up all checks since the Circus St raid and that they were in a stronger position now, since a meeting with U & I. She confirmed that no-one had suggested that it had been connected to modern slavery although it had been reported as trafficking, and that there had been no action proven on this since then, as they now ensured that checks were taking place.

 

8.19    Superintendent De La Rue stated that in relation to hate crime statistics the number of crimes had risen, although this seemed to be counter intuitive the general trend appeared to be an increase in these crimes.

 

8.20    Councillor Powell asked for figures on the rolling out of SoS and the 178 premises who had signed up as mentioned in paragraph 3.24.  The Head of Safer Communities said she would be happy to check and come back to clarify on these figures.

 

8.21    Councillor Powell then asked about the reporting of disability hate crime and how the council were making disabled, sight impaired and deaf groups feel supported.

 

8.22    Superintendent De La Rue replied that the police encouraged the reporting of disability hate crime and that they wanted to engage with victim support groups and possibly move to a third-party reporting system.  He confirmed that they had worked with Speak Out .

 

8.23    Emma McDermott - Head of Communities & Equality confirmed that the council had worked closely with the police and co-ordinated with the deaf community, with there being a new Police Liaison Officer for the Deaf community and wanted to get a similar forum established as they had in the Hampshire area.

 

8.24      Anusree Biswas asked about campaigns that may address the County Lines  issues  in Brighton & Hove.

 

8.25    The Head of Safer Communities replied that a media campaign had been launched that focussed on youth exploitation rather than drugs on this issue.

 

8.26    Councillor Simson queried how disability hate crime was categorised differently from other hate crimes.

 

8.27    Councillor McNair asked why violence against the person was up by 100 per cent as this was a huge statistic.

 

8.28    Superintendent De La Rue replied that this statistic included about 20 different offences that included DV and he also highlighted an increase in stalking offences and that the police needed to improve on mistakes in this issue. 

 

8.29    Councillor Hill stated that it was important to show what the council and the police were doing and that a reduction in funding had affected this and that this would shore up enormous problems for the future.

 

8.30    Councillor Bagaeen asked how many refugees the council had resettled since in Bristol they had resettled 150 people.

 

8.31    The Head of Communities & Equality replied that there was a report pathway that she could send out that detailed this information.  She confirmed that the resettlement programme was discussed with leaders of various groups and 10 households were supported four years ago.  They then went back to the Leader’s group and it was agreed to take a further 10 households, so around 30 people.  She stated that at least 3 families had properties allocated and that this was a challenging area.  She confirmed that the program had been extended by one year and that they had received feedback from four families.

 

8.32    Councillor Powell cited Councillor Hill’s comments on the effect of cuts for 10 years and stated that training needed to be prioritised for vulnerable people and that the council needed to ensure that the support was there.

 

8.33    Councillor Ebel stated that she wanted so to support the amendment for the trans community as it was important to be respectful to this group.

 

 

8.34    RESOLVED: That the Committee agreed to the recommendations of the report as follows:  

 

1.             To note and comment on the information contained in the report which provides an update on work being undertaken by the Community Safety Team in relation to the Community Safety Team in relation to the Community Safety and Crime Reduction Strategy 2017 – 20.

 

2.             To give its continued support to the partnership work described in the report and to work described which is within the council’s remit, thereby contributing to the management of crime and community safety priorities for the city.

 

3.             To roll out the Trans Awareness Training recommended by the Trans Scrutiny Panel to new councillors as soon as possible as part of the current Member Development Package, given the sharp rise in recorded hate crime against our trans community both locally and nationally.

 

 

Supporting documents:

 


Bookmark this page using:

Find out more about social bookmarking

These sites allow you to store, tag and share links across the internet. You can share these links both with friends and people with similar interests. You can also access your links from any computer you happen to be using.

If you come across a page on our site that you find interesting and want to save for future reference or share it with other people, simply click on one of these links to add to your list.

All of these sites are free to use but do require you to register. Once you have registered you can begin bookmarking.

Brighton & Hove City Council | Hove Town Hall | Hove | BN3 3BQ | Tel: (01273) 290000 | Mail: info@brighton-hove.gov.uk | how to find us | comments & complaints