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PCC to learn from victim experience

By Luton On Sunday  |  Posted: February 10, 2013

OUT AND ABOUT: PCC Martins and Deputy PCC Tafheen Sharif on patrol earlier this week with police and community support officers in Luton

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Police boss Olly Martins wants to communicate directly with victims of crime and ‘make sure we’re learning the lessons of their experiences’.

The Police and Crime Commissioner was speaking after his plan to save the jobs of police and community support officers (PCSOs) was approved by Bedfordshire police and crime panel.

He had previously announced that he would raise the police precept to support PCSOs facing the axe.

The precept is the money taxpayers contribute to the Bedfordshire Police force and from April it will rise by two per cent, which equates to an extra six pence a week for the average Band D household.

During a patrol with PCSOs in the town on Wednesday Mr Martins told Luton on Sunday that his plan for tackling crime in Bedfordshire would centre around ‘protecting the public, partnership working and prevention’.

He said: “Protecting the public is looking at improving the response of the police and other agencies give to anti-social behaviour.

“There are going to be things such as improved IT systems and they are going to help them pick up on repeat victimisation a lot easier than they do at the moment.

“Partnership working will include getting a holistic and joined-up response to victims of crime, particularly where there are witnesses going through the criminal justice system.

“So that’s all about information sharing between the different agencies so that the victim doesn’t have to keep giving the same information to different agencies repeatedly.”

Mr Martins also said he wanted to ‘tackle the underlying causes of crime’ and extend the county’s Integrated Offender Management program.

He added: “At the moment it just works with a narrow group of offenders but it’s not capturing the sort of the offenders that are causing the highest level of harm.”

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