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Posted on 07:55:00 on 1st October 2018

An increase in officers dedicated to neighbourhood policing, combined with the launch of ‘Local Focus Hubs’ is putting community issues to the top of the agenda.

With around 100 PCSOs dedicated to neighbourhood policing around the county, the Constabulary is increasing the resources it dedicates to key issues including antisocial behaviour, road safety, and a visible policing deterrent on the streets.

The increase includes an additional 25 police officers dedicated to community policing who will work under the six dedicated neighbourhood policing inspectors introduced a year ago.

The additional 25 officers fulfil a pledge made by the Police and Crime Commissioner Peter McCall in April of this year, while four of the six inspectors were also funded by the Commissioner. This was in response to feedback Mr McCall received from the public of Cumbria – who wanted to see more officers visible and present in their communities.

The 25 new officers will be working in communities, alongside Police Community Support Officers – whose numbers are to be maintained at 95, as pledged by Mr McCall.

Alongside this, Local Focus Hubs are beginning their work, often based out of police stations.

Neighbourhood policing will be delivered by these Hubs, with six around the county – two in North Cumbria, two in West Cumbria and two in South Cumbria.

The Hubs allow different agencies – police, council, housing, fire and more – to come together and work side by side to find solutions when specific issues are raised.

The Local Focus Hubs are to be supported by the launch of six Local Focus Facebook groups which will offer the public the opportunity to liaise directly with a number of agencies, including the police, in one place. The first to launch was the Carlisle Focus group. This week will see the launch of Copeland, Allerdale, Eden, Barrow and South Lakes groups.

Superintendent Rob O’Connor said:

“Having extra resources available to support neighbourhood policing is good news for everyone in the county. These officers will be out on the street and will have a tangible, practical impact on tackling local problems.

“Working alongside the new hubs will mean our effectiveness to tackle some of the most impactful problems, such as antisocial behaviour, will greatly increase.

“The introduction of Hubs will mean our officers can work closer than ever before with partners and the local community. Tackling an issue such as antisocial behaviour can involve many agencies, not just ourselves. Where, in the past, these different agencies may have confronted the problem alone, now we can bring representatives from each agency together, under one roof, to get to the root of the problem.”

Hubs are now in place in Copeland (based at Whitehaven Police Station), Allerdale (based at Cockermouth Police Station), South Lakeland (based at Kendal Police Station), Barrow (based at Barrow Police Station) and Carlisle (based at the Civic Centre).

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