Police unite with volunteer groups to crack down on crime

PUBLISHED: 12:00 17 June 2014

Archant

BETTER co-ordination between voluntary groups and the police is a key ingredient in a new project launching in Weston’s South Ward in the autumn.

The One Team Project, formerly called Bournville One, is likely to be based on Weston’s Bournville and Oldmixon estates.

The Mercury reported in January how the scheme aims to crack down on antisocial behaviour by putting a dedicated police team in place.

Sergeant Lee Kerslake is running the project, and is currently researching the ways different organisations can better work together on the two estates.

He said: “We are still in the very early planning stages, speaking to all of the agencies and organisations in the area.

“We’re not looking to change anything, but find out what they are doing to see if the way we work together can be improved.

“For example, we are looking to improve our communication so any issues can be dealt with quicker.”

The One Team Project may also link with a health inequalities panel, which has been set up to find a way to combat disparities in health and wellbeing on the wards compared to other areas of North Somerset.

Although the area the project will cover has not been finalised, the Coronation estate is likely to miss out.

This is because the independent Boundary Commission has proposed a number of ward changes, and it could see the estate moved from being part of South Ward, to be linked instead with Clarence and Uphill.

The project has been described as being similar to Halcon One in Taunton which aims to create greater partnerships between agencies to influence the allocation of services, reduce the amount of crime, and raise trust and confidence in reporting domestic violence.

It also aims to improve community participation and reduce incidents of youth crime.

Sergeant Kerslake said: “I’m new to the area and still learning what projects there are.

“I’m looking at the voluntary sector, as they don’t want us to do what they are already doing.

“But if they need us to move obstacles to help deal with a problem, we could get better with doing that.”

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