I am delighted that the Home Office has announced the Safer Streets Fund (Round Five) 5, which includes £284,523.65 for Chatham Town Centre. The Safer Streets Fund is central to the Government’s mission of levelling up. Everyone in this country should have the security and confidence that comes from a safe street and a safe home.
I have been in close contact with Kent Police and our Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner for Kent, Matthew Scott, while this bid was put together and have made clear to Government how urgently this area needs additional police support. I was pleased that Matthew took the time to visit Chatham with me a few weeks ago so we could discuss the challenges and how the Safer Street Fund from Home Office could help our town.
The area experienced the highest anti-social behaviour levels in Medway; the highest violence against women and girls (VAWG) with the highest harm score in Medway and the highest incidence of neighbourhood crime. Data also shows the highest concentration of violence against women and girls victims being resident in Chatham.
Specific crime types to be targeted are, anti-social behaviour: Rowdy/nuisance gatherings in public/impeding public access and drunken rowdy behaviour, environmental ASB – litter and fly tipping, Sexual Offences, Retail theft, robbery, alongside the secondary crime type of criminal damage.
Delivery will include,
• Increased CCTV to the rear of the High Streets
• Establish a new Neighbourhood Watch area
• Increase training for door and security staff in VAWG, drink spiking and welfare / vulnerability.
• Targeted outreach work with young people
• Environmental improvements, including fly tipping and graffiti removal
• Community outreach raise awareness and engagement particularly for VAWG