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Should you wish to refer any decisions contained in these minutes to Policy and Resources Committee, please submit a Decision Referral Form, signed by three Councillors, to the Head of Policy, Communications and Governance by: 27 February 2018

 
 


MAIDSTONE BOROUGH COUNCIL

 

COMMUNITIES, HOUSING AND ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE

 

Minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday 13 February 2018

 

Present:

Councillors Barned, M Burton, Garten, Joy, Lewins, Perry, Mrs Ring and Mrs Robertson

 

Also Present:

 Councillor Mrs Gooch

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104.     Apologies for Absence

 

It was noted that apologies were received from Councillors D Mortimer and Webster.

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105.     Notification of Substitute Members

 

The following Substitute Members were noted:

 

·         Councillor Lewins for Councillor D Mortimer

 

·         Councillor Perry for Councillor Webster

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106.     Urgent Items

 

There were no urgent items.

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107.     Notification of Visiting Members

 

It was noted that Councillor Mrs Gooch was present as a Visiting Member and indicated her wish to speak on Agenda Item 11 – 2018-19 Strategic Assessment.

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108.     Disclosures by Members and Officers

 

There were no disclosures by Members and Officers.

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109.     Disclosures of Lobbying

 

There were no disclosures of lobbying.

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110.     Exempt Items

 

RESOLVED: That all items on the agenda be taken in public as proposed.

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111.     Minutes of the Meeting Held on 28 March 2017

 

RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting held on 28 March 2017 be approved as a correct record and signed.

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112.     Presentation of Petitions (if any)

 

There were no petitions.

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113.     Questions and answer session for members of the public (if any)

 

There were no questions from members of the public.

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<AI11>

 

114.     2018-19 Strategic Assessment

 

Mr Nicolas Rathbone, Community Protection Officer, presented this item to the Committee.

 

It was highlighted to the Committee that:

 

·         The Strategic Assessment was completed annually to interrogate crime data in order to identify crime and disorder trends which are then used to set the Safer Maidstone Partnership (SMP) priorities for the next year.

 

·         The proposed SMP priorities for 2018/19 were:

 

o   Organised Crime Groups in Modern Slavery

o   Gangs and Child Sexual Exploitation

o   Substance Misuse

o   Domestic Abuse

o   Mental Health

 

·         The removal of ‘Other Violent Crime’ from alongside the ‘Domestic Abuse’ priority was because a substantial proportion of violent crime incidents were related to domestic abuse. Any non-related serious violent crime was already dealt with robustly by the Police and some cases crossed over into other priority areas.

 

·         No new trends or risks had emerged throughout the year that weren’t already covered within one of the priority areas.

 

·         There was an SMP away day scheduled for 20 February 2018 to help set the action plans for the priority areas.

 

·         Since April 2017 there had been changes in the way that offences are recorded. Offences are now individually recorded rather than being grouped into one offence. For example, an affray including 6 people was previously recorded as one offence, but now it would be recorded as 6 separate offences.

 

·         Since April 2017, Burglary had been split into Residential and Business/Community and so the data did not give a true comparison compared with the following year.

 

·         Maidstone Crime Survey 2017 questioned over 6,000 randomly selected households. The Survey displayed that overall the majority of respondents were not worried about someone breaking into their home or being assaulted.

 

·         Year 6 was a key transition period for children as they could feel vulnerable. Therefore, Kent Police were engaging with children and their parents/caregivers about the transition period in order to support them.

 

Councillor Mrs Gooch addressed the Committee on this item.

 

Chief Inspector Mick Gardner and Inspector Mark Hedges gave a presentation to the Committee on the implementation of the New Horizon model.

 

It was noted that:

 

·         The New Horizon model considered the range of vulnerable people to make sure that they were protected.

 

·         The County response to vulnerability was:

 

o   There was a Mental Health Team which worked with partners to provide a consistent service for mental health service users to improve outcomes and manage demand;

 

o   There           was a Central Referral Unit which provided a multi-agency central point of access for vulnerable people; and

 

o   The Wanted Person Bureau coordinated the County’s response to wanted people.

 

·         There were Specialist PCSOs in roles such as:

 

o   Vulnerable Adult Intervention Officer;

o   Youth Engagement Officer;

o   In the Missing and Child Exploitation Team; and

o   Domestic Abuse Single Point of Contact.

 

·         There was a new Detective Superintendent for local policing to improve service delivery to victims of crime and reduce harm in communities.

 

·         There were an additional 100 staff embedded into local policing in the County to enhance the response to vulnerable people.

 

In response to questions from the Committee, Inspector Mark Hedges replied that:

 

·         There was one gang in Maidstone and lots of work was being done to dismantle it. Work was also being undertaken to prevent young people joining a gang in the first place.

 

·         The way that crimes are recorded was governed by Her Majesties Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC).

 

·         The Kent Police and Crime Commissioner was looking into the 101 reporting system to consider ways that it could be improved.

 

·         People detained under Section 136 of the Mental Health Act would not be held at a Police Station. They would be taken to a medical place of safety i.e. Priority House or an accident and emergency unit.

 

·         New Horizon was started at the end of 2017 and the model should be at full capacity by July 2018.

 

In response to questions from the Committee, Chief Inspector Mick Gardner replied that he would make sure that other districts would be briefed about Maidstone so that Officers who were called in to answer a threat were aware of Maidstone’s circumstances.

 

RESOLVED: To recommend to Council:

 

That the priorities recommended in the 2018/19 Strategic Assessment, to be adopted by the Safer Maidstone Partnership for inclusion within the Community Safety Plan for 2018/19, be approved.

 

Voting: Unanimous

 

Note: Councillors Perry and Mrs Ring left the meeting at 7.11 p.m. during consideration of this item.

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115.     Duration of Meeting

 

6.30 p.m. to 8.11 p.m.

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