Chief Constable reviews patrols following PCC survey
Kent’s Chief Constable has said he has reviewed where police patrols are carried out, following a survey which found most women and girls felt unsafe in their town centres at night.
During the quarterly Performance and Delivery Board, the Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Scott asked the Chief Constable what he was doing to tackle violence against women and girls.
Alan Pughsley told him he had launched a new 5-point strategy to address the issue, following the Commissioner’s public survey late last year and a series of public engagement events held around Kent.
He said he had listened to Kent’s female population and now patrols are carried out where people feel unsafe, not just in areas where crimes had previously taken place. He also told Matthew Scott his new strategy will target all types of offenders preying on women.
Alan Pughsley said,
“That has come up really loudly both in your survey and our public engagements, where some people believed that the victims, women and girls, should modify their behaviour. We have said loud and clear from the beginning that it is the offender who need to modify their behaviour and we are focussing on them.
We are also addressing culture, both internally and working externally particularly in schools, where we are helping to educate young boys with regards to their behaviour.”
The Police and Crime Commissioner, Matthew Scott said,
“Thank you very much for your work on this. It is a new priority in the forthcoming Police and Crime Plan and I hope we can not only reduce offending but improve feelings of safety around our county, particularly in our town centres."
The exchange took place at the Performance and Delivery Board, where the Police and Crime Commissioner hold the Chief Constable to account.
He also asked Alan Pughsley whether he would commit to extending the popular Community Speedwatch programme. An officer has been temporarily working with teams of volunteers across Kent, to reduce speeding and improve road safety.
Mr Scott said,
“Is the Force going to extend the Community Speedwatch post, or even make it permanent? It has been very popular in the community.”
Mr Pughsley said,
“Well, I am going to make a decision on the hoof here, but yes. It’s right and proper that we should have that as a permanent post. There is a huge amount of evidence to show the tangible impact it has had to road safety whether you’re in a car or walking.”
Notes to editors.
The Performance and Delivery Boards happen quarterly and are where the PCC, Matthew Scott, holds the Chief Constable to account.