- Community to be at the centre of building local plans to tackle serious violence
- Knife-related hospital admissions fall 16% between April 2018 and March 2020
- Thousands of school visits teach children about dangers of carrying weapons
- More than 1,700 weapons seized in first year of Home Office ‘surge funding’
The Greater Manchester Serious Violence Action Plan has been unveiled on Monday 29 June as figures reveal that hundreds of weapons have been taken off the streets in the last year and knife-related hospital admissions have fallen. The plan uses a community-led approach with public health integrally involved, and with families, communities, education and policing at its heart, in a concerted drive to prevent violence across the city-region.
It follows a multi-million pound investment in tackling serious violence across the city-region, led by Greater Manchester’s Violence Reduction Unit (VRU), which brings together health, police and criminal justice, education, youth justice, and the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector. The significant sum injected into the in the VRU matches a similar package of support invested in, and focusing on, enforcement.
The definition of serious violence in the action plan includes: violence with injury and without injury; domestic abuse, homicide, stalking and harassment, possession of weapon offences, robbery, sexual offences including rape, and public order offences such as inciting racial or religious hatred.
The new plan sets out how Greater Manchester will continue to tackle the underlying causes of violent crime through a combination of early intervention, education and prevention, alongside police enforcement action, delivered by the VRU.
The community-led, public health approach underpinning this will use different interventions throughout a person's life to help reduce the propensity for violence. This will mainly focus on young people and those from our most deprived communities.
With the community, we will work with those most affected by serious violence to build aspirations and opportunities in the most hardest-hit areas. A six-month pilot in six sites across Greater Manchester, working with the VCSE sector, will use this model of tackling this type of crime.
The plan will drive forward the city-region’s community-led, place-based, public health approach to tackling the issue, including:
- A £500,000 investment in piloting new community-led approaches to tackling violent crime, working closely with the VCSE sector
- More than £4.5m devolved to Greater Manchester’s 10 Community Safety Partnerships to develop local plans and initiatives
- An increase in the number of police officers when and where they are needed most, including school-based officers where they are requested and agreed
- Funding for Youth Justice Services for violence desistance and prevention programme
- Improved data sharing to improve our collective understanding of the problem of violence across all our communities and enable a more intelligence-led operational response
- Investing in activities that have a good evidence base of helping families to work through issues, such as family group conferencing
- The creation of a Victims’ Champion to advocate for the rights of victims and ensure services meet their needs
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