Quarter 4 (January 2019 - March 2019)
During quarter four we welcomed a new Chief Inspector, Clare Smith, who will have overall responsibility for running the Hertsmere policing teams. Chief Inspector Clare Smith replaces Chief Inspector Steve O’Keeffe. We also welcomed a new Safer Neighbourhood Inspector, Mark Bilsdon. He has replaced Inspector Pete Edwards.
Primary schools in Potters Bar have taken part in the Mini Police programme, which is designed to help young people establish an interest and understanding in policing and community safety. Year 5 pupils at Pope Paul Primary School and Wroxham Primary School embarked on the eight-week course, which was co-ordinated by Potters Bar Neighbourhood Team. The pupils took part in lessons and activities that covered the law, how to be a responsible citizen, how to keep themselves safe and the consequences of crime and anti-social behaviour.
In January, speakers from Trading Standards shared information about loan sharks with landlords in Hertsmere at the latest Landlords Forum.
In February, over 200 Year 9 pupils from Hertswood Academy were given an insight into the dangers and consequences of knife crime. Representatives from the Police, St Giles Trust and The Josh Hanson Trust spoke to pupils about county drug lines, gangs, grooming and the impact carrying and using a knife can have on a family and the wider community. The students were also given a lesson in emergency first aid from Borehamwood fire officers. After the event, speakers from St Giles Trust presented to schoolteachers and professionals who work with young people about spotting the signs that a young person has become involved in drug and knife crime.
Officers from the council together with Spot the Signs, Samaritans, British Transport Police, Govia Thameslink and Hertfordshire Police spread awareness of the need to talk more openly about mental health and suicide prevention during a Walkabout in Potters Bar. Representatives from these organisations spoke to various local businesses, the community and residents about mental health, Spot the Signs training and support services available.
Also in February, Hertsmere Borough Council approved the adoption of powers for fixed penalty notices for homeowners who breach their duty of care when disposing of waste. This means a householder who has passed on their waste without taking reasonable measures to ensure the person is authorised to do so. Householders can be issued with a £300 fixed penalty notice – reduced to £200 if paid within 10 days - if they pass their domestic waste onto a third party, who then dumps the items. The council, along with the other district members of The Hertfordshire Fly-tipping Group, a multi-agency taskforce, are introducing the fines.
In addition, Operation Gallium, a multi-agency operation to assess commercial vehicles, tackle fly-tipping and reduce illegal waste carriers, took place in Bushey. A total of 82 vehicles were stopped during the operation. Two vehicles were seized, three drivers were reported for having no driving licence or insurance and a wanted man was arrested for assault in London. Three motorists were told to reduce their loads and four drivers were dealt with by VOSA for using vehicles that were not roadworthy. As a result of partnership operations like this, we can help to improve the safety of road users and tackle fly-tipping in the area.
During Op Spectre, the national week of action against knife crime, knife bins were out in seven locations across Hertsmere. It was opportunity for members of the public to surrender any unwanted knives anonymously without fear of prosecution for possession of these items. The campaign allowed officers from Safer Neighbourhood teams to educate young people about the dangers of carrying a knife, crime prevention advice and raise awareness amongst local businesses that selling certain knives to anyone under 18 is illegal. As part of a wider campaign officers carried out knife detection operations and test purchasing at retailers who sell knives.
Also in March, Hertsmere Borough Council hosted a domestic abuse training session. Liz Perry and Sara Jackson, managers of SAHWR Specialist Domestic Abuse Services, delivered the session to 38 professionals and members of the voluntary sector. The session looked at the types of domestic abuse, how perpetrators gain control, why victims stay in an abusive relationship, the effects of domestic abuse on children and the agencies that can help survivors.
The Annual Domestic Abuse Conference, which represents domestic abuse forums across St Albans, Hertsmere, Welwyn and Hatfield, was held at Campus West in Welwyn Garden City at the end of March. As part of the day’s theme, ‘Young people - we’re victims too’, the conference heard the testimony of 19-year-old Leah, who was the victim of domestic abuse by her boyfriend when she was 18. Other speakers also examined the impact of domestic abuse on young people, with topics including housing and life in refuge shelters.
In addition to the above other initiatives and events that have taken place during this quarter include bike marking at Aberford Park in Borehamwood, safety talks at Dame Alice Owens and Immanuel College , regular crime prevention advice events, a fraud prevention event at Barclays bank in Borehamwood, and beat surgeries.
If you would like more information on any of the initiatives or events discussed above, or would like to talk to someone from Hertsmere CSP, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 8207 7801.