The percentage of residents feeling safe after dark in Central Bedfordshire has decreased by 9 percent since 2016 Image-By-Photographee.eu-AdobeStock_92874284.jpg

The percentage of residents feeling safe after dark in Central Bedfordshire has decreased by 9% since 2016

At today’s (5 February 2019) Central Bedfordshire Council’s (CBC) Executive Meeting, members voted agree to the proposal for 12 new community safety posts to support the Council’s community safety agenda.

While the police force is the primary crime and disorder agency, CBC has a statutory duty in supporting the reduction of crime and disorder in its area.

However, residents want to see a visible and tangible response to the issues that affect them and their quality of life, on a day to day basis.

As well as being a visible response, the proposed additional officers will be an extension to the existing investigation and criminal enforcement duties carried out by CBC. Such as monitoring CCTV, collating and providing intelligence, and managing local problem-solving groups.

Officers to tackle anti-social behaviour (ASB)

The Neighbourhood Officers will regularly patrol communities using Council powers and, subject to accreditation, delegated police powers to tackle lower level ASB, littering, environmental crime etc. using the sanctions, including Fixed Penalty Notices, available to them.

As far as possible they will provide a presence across Central Bedfordshire although there will be times when they will be deployed in targeted areas based on intelligence and information.

Marcel Coiffait, director of Community Services, told the Executive that the officers are not just about enforcement, they are to engage with the community.

Cllr Young said:

“This is a huge step forward in terms of visibility for the council and a great step forward in supporting our residents.”

Survey revealed several specific crime and anti-social behaviour issues

The Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) Residents Survey revealed several specific crime and anti-social behaviour issues that were considered to be worse than in 2016 including:

  • Burglary
  • Car crime
  • People using/dealing drugs
  • Groups hanging around streets

The Community Safety Partnership (CSP) Community Safety Survey asked people about the extent to which CSP partners were making people feel safer:

Central Bedfordshire Council: 36% not much: 31% not at all

Bedfordshire Police: 36% not much, 23% not at all

Fire & Rescue Service: 14% not much, 4% not at all