South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Dr Alan Billings has welcomed the Government announcement of £1 million being made available to fund police activity in South Yorkshire to tackle serious violence and steer young people away from crime.
The funding is part of a £30 million announcement for England and Wales. South Yorkshire is one of 18 force areas that will benefit. £1 million has been earmarked for South Yorkshire as one of 18 areas in the UK most affected by violent crime. It is in addition to the £1.6 million announced last month to fund the work of the South Yorkshire Violence Reduction Unit to deliver coordinated action to tackle serious violence by seeking to find ways of stopping young people being exposed to, or drawn into, violence and to help those who have been involved in violence to turn their lives around.
Dr Billings said: “As I understand it the money is to be made available but we will have to submit a proposal as to how it will be used. If successful, this money combined with the additional officers we are recruiting in South Yorkshire should help to make a significant difference, and to make up for ground that was undoubtedly lost during the years when the police grant and officer numbers were continually being cut.
“However, we need to be careful that additional police overtime does not lead to a tired workforce that has been working flat out for the last year to cope with the additional burdens of policing the pandemic and all the emergency laws and regulations.
“The government are developing habits of throwing pots of money at problems from time to time and this is not the best way of solving issues as important as serious violence. We need an assured income over longer periods of time so that sound strategic plans can be made.”