Engagement Quarterly Blog – July 2023
This entry will update you on the community engagement work I have participated in as Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire and York over April to June 2023.
Over the last three months there have been many engagement activities which have taken place, so I wanted to highlight these moments which continue to be fantastic opportunities for me to be out and about meeting North Yorkshire and City of York communities.
North Yorkshire & York Supermarket Drop in Engagement Mornings – April to June 2023
I started my Supermarket Engagement Mornings in March, and it really has been such a great way to meet members of the public across the entire county hearing about the issues and concerns they have around our police and fire services. Thank you to everyone who has stopped and chatted in Thirsk, Filey, Ripon, Catterick Garrison and York so far, and I’m looking forward to my engagement mornings in Northallerton, Selby, Harrogate, and Skipton over the summer.
I would also like to give the kind staff of Tesco and Morrisons a massive thank you for allowing us to visit and use their stores.
Information on my upcoming Supermarket visits can be found on my website: https://www.northyorkshire-pfcc.gov.uk/how-can-we-help/commissioner/
13 April – Rural Watch Online Forum
It was great to be joined by members of North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Task Force and members from across all our rural watch groups in North Yorkshire to have an evening of open discussions around what is working well and what needs improving for this rural community. There was a great amount of feedback provided and would really like to thank the rural watch group representatives for coming together for the evening meeting. I have also raised some of the issues discussed directly with the Chief Constable on their behalf and hope the twenty-five rural watch groups continue to keep up the fantastic work they are doing across the county.
27 April – Stalking Awareness Week – Stalking Team Visit York Fulford Road
As part of Stalking Awareness Week, I visited North Yorkshire Police’s Stalking Team at their office in York to find out more about the great work they carry out. The team went through how a Stalking Protection Order works, and how they work closely with key multiagency partners. It was great to hear how passionate they are to help and keep the people of North Yorkshire and York safe.
Thank you to DCI Wynne, Michelle, Helen, and Dawn for having us.
4 May – Community Payback 50th Year Anniversary Event, Acomb York
I was privileged to be invited to St Stephens Church in Acomb, York to be a part of Community Payback’s 50th Year Anniversary and the journey of ‘The Golden Spade’ which has made its way around the country as part of their celebrations.
I got the opportunity to see one of the teams in action as they undertook their unpaid work placement strimming and tidying up the church graveyard overseen by a supervisor.
It was great to hear more about all the ongoing projects that are going on around the region, their continued work with Youth Justice, the challenges they deal with, as well as engaging with the workers on their coffee break for their feedback on their placement.
I would like to thank Liz, Sandra, Don, Sewanu, Joe and the four workers for providing insight into the hard work they do and the benefits the deliver to local communities.
If you would like to nominate an unpaid work project within the Yorkshire and Humber area please use the QR code or weblink below:
20 May – Youth Commission Meeting, York
I had a fantastic day meeting up with the Youth Commission in York where they heard about lived experience of drugs and gangs. North Yorkshire Police also joined the meeting and worked with members of the Youth Commission to find out more on how the police and my office can engage with young people in North Yorkshire online better.
Thanks to Leaders Unlocked for letting us come along and join the meeting.
If you would like to find out more about the work of the Youth Commission please visit the following link: https://www.northyorkshire-pfcc.gov.uk/for-you/young-people/youth/youth-commission-seeks-new-members/
17 May – Whitby Stakeholder Safety Working Group Meeting
It was great to be a part of setting up this working group alongside Whitby Town Council, who my office has been closely liaising with for the last year around safety concerns in the centre of the town. We were also joined by North Yorkshire Police and North Yorkshire Council Scarborough Licensing Team representatives and discussed issues around anti-social behaviour, Drugs and night-time economy.
It was a great first meeting and showed the benefit of getting key stakeholders around a table and looking into ways to further work together for the benefit of their local community. I look forward to attending the next meeting and hearing how partners have been working collectively to combat the issues and concerns raised.
10 June – Whitby Patrol Evening
I had a good evening patrol with the local Whitby Neighbourhood Police Team and local Whitby town Councillors. This was actioned to take place after the working group meeting in May was held so I could come and see what the town is like on a weekend evening.
On the walkabout we visited several public houses and there were some very useful conversations with their door staff and employees working in the local pubs. It was a great opportunity for them to voice their concerns directly to me about some of the recent situations that had occurred. I felt it was a very positive and useful visit and I am looking forward to reconvening with the working group in September to discuss how the summer season has been.
14 June – York Youth Bus Visit
I had a great evening spent at Scarcroft Green in York to visit the Youth Bus, run by Jess Ward founder of Inspire Youth Yorkshire. Jess applied for my office’s Community Fund last year and was awarded £19,200.00. The funding enables a 48-week mobile Youth Bus for the city of York to engage with around 200 young people some of who may be at risk of entering the criminal justice system. This project is delivered across four areas of the city, which were determined through local intelligence led by North Yorkshire Police and linking in with key local partners such as York Youth Justice Service, Community Safety Hub, and North Yorkshire Youth Change Direction.
The Youth Bus is there every Wednesday evening from 4:30-6pm and is offered free of charge. It attracts young people between the ages of 8-14 years who come to socialise, play card games, video games, and sports activities, in a safe space. Thanks so much to Jess and her PCSO Danny Stannard for arranging the visit.
22 June – All About Respect Network Event, York
I was honoured to be asked to open the All About Respect Community Networking Day in York.
It was great to see key partners from Universities of York and York St John; York College; Survive; Stop Hate UK; North Yorkshire Youth Commission; as well as representatives from the local police and fire services all in one room discussing all the work they’ve done so far on tackling gender-based violence and hate crime across the North Yorkshire and York.
There sadly is no quick fix to ending this violence and whilst we celebrate the great progress achieved to date, there is still much more to do. I hope this network event leads to creating more multiagency approaches to be able to work together going forward to tackle these issues.
23 June – North Yorkshire Police, Fire & Crime Commissioner’s Role in Safeguarding Online Session
As part of Safeguarding awareness week I held an online event to discuss my role of the North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner in safeguarding as part of a week-long itinerary of events on the subject.
In the session I examined my role, and that of my office, in safeguarding and looked at the relationship with North Yorkshire Police, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue, local authorities, health partners and the public to keep people safe and feeling safe.
I enjoyed highlighting what progress has been made and delivered through my Police & Crime Plan and Fire & Rescue Plan. It will also focus on key areas of work, including the overarching violence against women and girls’ strategy – developed with statutory partners, and those with lived experience and the organisations representing them.
I would like to thank the 40 individuals who came along and joined the session live, and if anyone would like to revisit or watch the session who could not attend at the time please use the link below to be directed to my YouTube Channel where a recording has been uploaded: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWO7udVLjL4
29 June – Bilton and Woodfield Resident Meeting
I attended this meeting to hear the local residents general concerns about North Yorkshire Police, specifically around anti-social behaviour issues which were ongoing in the area. Whilst it was great to hear their comments and feedback I was very pleased to hear them compliment their local neighbourhood policing team for their visibility and that they had all noticed a greater policing presence since raising their initial concerns.
I would like to thank Councillor Paul Haslam for inviting me down for the evening.
Engagement opportunities over the coming months: July – September
- Supermarket Drop in Mornings:
- 19th July 2023, Northallerton – Tesco Superstore
- 26th July 2023, Selby – Tesco Superstore
- 2nd August 2023, Harrogate – Morrisons
- 23rd August 2023, Skipton – Tesco Superstore
- 6th September 2023, Settle – Booths
- 20th September 2023, Malton – Morrisons
- Anti-Social Behaviour Week
- Great Yorkshire Show
- Community Fund Project Visits
- Violence Against Women and Girls 1 Year on Events
- National Rural Crime Action Week
- Launch of a film to raise awareness of stalking amongst 16–25-year-olds.
Very Important Reminders:
- I will be continuing with my monthly Virtual Advice Surgeries. This is a great opportunity for you to discuss any matters you think should be brought to my attention relating to policing or the fire service in your community. To request an appointment or for any information on advice surgeries this can be found here: northyorkshire-pfcc.gov.uk/advice
- My Online Public Meetings will take place every third Thursday of the month, but each month will focus on either North Yorkshire Police or North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service individually. The meetings will be even more informative for the public, providing value and insight into how North Yorkshire Police and North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are performing against the objectives set in my police and crime, and fire and rescue plan, with discussions on specific topics, updates on statutory inspections and dedicated Q&A time. As your commissioner it’s my responsibility to amplify your questions and concerns to police and fire Chiefs and to seek the answers you need to be safe and feel safe at home, in your community, and across York and North Yorkshire. More information can be found on my website: northyorkshire-pfcc.gov.uk/police-oversight/governance/governance-process/corporate-scrutiny-board/ *Please note there will be no meeting in August 2023.
It has been fantastic engaging with such a wide variety of individuals across the first six months of 2023. I am looking forward to all the upcoming community engagement opportunities taking place over the next few months where I will be able to continue listening and connecting with the residents across the county and being there to hear and take on board any concerns raised about our police or fire services.
Thank you for reading and I look forward to updating you further on my engagement activities in October.