Agenda and minutes

Venue: Virtual Meeting

Contact: Tracy Scollin 020 8359 2315 Email: tracy.scollin@barnet.gov.uk 

Link: Click here for the meeting

Items
No. Item

1.

Welcome and Introductions

    Minutes:

    The Chairman welcomed all those present. He thanked all partners for their work to keep services running during the Covid-19 pandemic.

2.

Apologies for Absence

    Minutes:

    Apologies were received from Emma Phasey, Group Manager, Community Protection, LBB and Kevin McKenzie, Borough Commander, London Fire Brigade.

     

3.

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 251 KB

    Minutes:

    The minutes of the meeting held on 24 January 2020 were received. Ms Bateman noted that she had sent her apologies.

     

    The Chairman clarified that his request for a report from the Metropolitan Police referred to ‘designing out crime’ (page 8).

     

    RESOLVED that the minutes were approved as an accurate record subject to the above amendments.

     

4.

Matters Arising

    Minutes:

    None.

5.

Community Safety Update pdf icon PDF 157 KB

    Overview update Briefing covering:

     

    ·       Domestic Abuse and VAWG

    ·       Antisocial Behaviour

    ·       Serious Adult Violence

    ·       Reducing Offending

    ·       Reducing high volume crime

    ·       Delivery of the Prevent Strategy

    ·       Trends in levels of crime and ASB

     

    (Relevant to all areas of the Community Safety Strategy)

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Mr Clifton presented his report on community safety in Barnet over the last nine months during the Covid-19 pandemic.

     

    Coordination of the various subgroups had been maintained throughout the pandemic including the Domestic Violence MARAC, Integrated Offender Management Panel, Serious Adult Violence Panel, Reducing Offending Strategic Group, Channel Panel, Prevent Strategy Steering Group, Community Safety MARAC and Antisocial Behaviour (ASB) Working Group.

     

    Crime had reduced overall during this period, driven largely by restrictions implemented due to the pandemic. The year to the end of August 2020 showed 2,000 fewer offences than the previous year, but violent crime had stayed around the same level. There had been an increase in robbery of 10-20% which was much lower than the increase seen prior to the pandemic.

     

    Mr Clifton reported that there had been no reduction in antisocial behaviour (ASB) during the 12 months to the end of August. There had been 13,000 calls to the police compared to 8000 in 2019. Many of these related to reports of Covid restriction breaches, particularly in residential areas. The Community Safety MARAC which tackles ASB meets regularly to review the most complex and persistent cases and to put in place risk assessments and action plans. This process had performed strongly during the pandemic. 

     

    Five Public Space Protection Orders (PSPO) had been implemented, and the four that related to street drinking had resulted in a 40% reduction in calls to the London Ambulance Service.

     

    Mr Clifton reported that domestic violence (DV) and violence against women and girls (VAWG) have been a major focus of the Council throughout the last nine months, as the Covid restrictions presented the potential for an increase in cases and for possible difficulties in reporting. The Community Safety Team has worked closely across a range of VAWG partnerships to reconfigure a range of services to support victims and work with perpetrators on behaviour change. The DV MARAC meetings have been increased from monthly to weekly which resulted in a faster turnaround of risk assessments and action plans, and it is hoped that this change can be maintained. The DV Strategy for Barnet is currently being refreshed, and details would be circulated after the meeting. Mr Clifton noted that he would be grateful if Board Members could provide feedback on this.

    Action: All

     

    Mr Clifton reported that last year the Council’s Senior Management Team discussed the need to identify and have interventions for adults at risk of serious violence, and had increased provision for this group. The Serious Adult Violence Panel was introduced on a pilot basis to review individuals who are at risk of being involved in violence and to put a plan in place. Individuals who are managed under the Youth Offending Team (YOT) transitioning to adult services at 18 years of age had been identified as at risk due to a potential reduction in their oversight. Mr Clifton noted that the Panel has reviewed over 30 cases since May 2020 and put supportive interventions in place. Also, the Integrated Offender  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Community Rehabilitation Company Report pdf icon PDF 251 KB

    ·       Probation services update

     

    (Relevant to Priority 5 of the Community Safety Strategy).

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Ms Mukhtar reported that there had been an update to the unification process for probation services since her slides had been published with the agenda pack. Interventions only would be put out to tender, with every other service reverting to the National Probation Service (NPS).  CRC and NPS would provide a unified service for all offenders.

     

    As part of the reorganisation there will be 12 probation areas across England and Wales with a Lead in each. There is also a Transition Working Group to help to implement the reform.

     

    Ms Mukhtar reported that a Dynamic Framework. Agreement was launched in June 2020 for seven years, extendable up to three years. Authorities can procure from 14 service categories.

     

    The Chairman asked whether the reform would impact on Barnet. Ms Mukhtar responded that inspection outcomes had been very good for Barnet and recommendations had been worked on. Unification is not a hindrance, and is viewed as a positive, meaning that CRC and NPS could work more closely together. She added that CRC is committed to its work on any Safeguarding Boards, the MARAC and all meetings until June 2021. 

     

    The Board resolved to note the report.

     

     

     

7.

Family Services Update pdf icon PDF 591 KB

    ·       Youth Justice Board update

    ·       Troubled Families

    ·       Cohorts where there are links to the Safer Communities Partnership Strategy, including Domestic Violence and VAWG, crime and ASB and demand pressures

     

    (Relevant to Priority 4 of the Community Safety Strategy)

    Minutes:

    Ms McElligot presented her slides about the team’s activities over the past six months:

     

    • There is still a high prevalence of children in need, and health and DV are the other two largest categories of need in relation to attaching families in Barnet.
    • The secondee had been appointed from CRC to the Troubled Families Programme enables professionals to be co-located from other agencies into Family Services as required. Two additional Welfare Advisors had been recruited due to the increase in furloughed and unemployed residents. A decision was awaited on funding for the Troubled Families Programme beyond March 2021.
    • Current data on young offenders is skewed, appearing much smaller than true figures, due to Covid. Offending overall has reduced, but a lot of young people had had hearings adjourned which would affect national data for several months.
    • Barnet’s custody rate remains one of England’s lowest and shows the Court’s confidence in the Youth Offending Service’s community interventions.
    • There appears to be a decrease in those at risk of reoffending and at high risk of serious harm, probably due to lockdown, but data delays make this difficult to confirm.
    • Youth Offending Officers saw people face-to-face during this period and the local Criminal Justice Magistrates had commended Barnet Youth Offending Services for providing this support during a difficult time.
    • Breaches have remained consistent during the past six months and Barnet officers had seen most individuals virtually, and in cases of non-compliance with the Order have ensured the individuals are returned to Court and had their sentences reviewed.
    • First time entrants to the criminal justice system had been low during the pandemic. Barnet remained lower than London and national averages.
    • Data revealed an increase in caseload for the YOT; however, 20% of this cohort are aged 18 and above and remained in this group due to deliberate delays in transfers to probation services during the pandemic so that they continued do receive support. The transfers had now begun.
    • Barnet’s prevention efforts in the aged 14 plus group of offenders, which disproportionately affects individuals from BAME backgrounds had been discussed with magistrates to try to ascertain whether those from BAME backgrounds had been sentenced more harshly than white people for the same crimes. The magistrates continue with his piece of work.
    • Barnet had signed up to Operation Harbinger which focuses on the ‘golden hour’ to ensure that children arriving into custody are promptly safeguarded. 
    • Barnet is working with the NPS to pilot a Resettlement in Transition Programme with the Youth Custody Replacement and Resettlement Service, to ensure that there is better preparation for when young people leave custody. There had been issues regarding housing due to Covid-19 so virtual meetings would be held to plan for their accommodation.
    • New community volunteers are being recruited to the Referral Order Panel; both virtual and face-to-face meetings would be held during the pandemic.
    • Fresh Start in Education Ltd has been appointed to support children at risk of exclusion from school, since this cohort is at high risk of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

North West BCU police update to the SCPB

    ·       Crime trends

    ·       BCU Policing update

     

    (Relevant to all priority areas of the Community Safety Strategy)

    Minutes:

    Superintendent Rawlinson presented his slides.

     

    Crime has generally reduced across London during the past few months, largely due to Covid. The North West BCU has the third highest overall crime rate in London. Barnet stands in the middle of the table of London Boroughs. 

     

    Superintendent Rawlinson noted that violence against the person has increased slightly over this period, with the offences mainly in the south-east part of the Borough. There has also been a slight increase in violence with injury and without injury. Burglary had reduced in all but one Ward, and targets have been agreed for burglary hotspots.

     

    There have been 38 fewer robberies than the previous year, a 3.4% decrease. Much of these offences were ‘youth on youth’ offences, such as mobile phone, ear pod and escooter thefts.

     

    The Metropolitan Police has been resourcing and filling vacancies in its Youth Engagement Team over the past six months, which would be based in Colindale, aimed at tackling the youth on youth offences. The team would focus on engagement and diversion activity, as well as providing a visible presence. Unmarked robbery cars would be deployed to areas of high robbery, staffed by CID and Response Team officers, to respond to calls and gain knowledge on the identity of the robbers. In addition, CID colleagues have set up Burglary and Robbery Investigation Teams (BRIT) to specialise in tackling these offences.

     

    Operation Autumn Nights would be led by Chief Inspector Ed Baildon over the next few weeks, with additional resources being used across the BCU, to focus on ASB which was typical around Halloween, and also to target burglary and robbery hotspots. The NW BCU is extending this to take into account the Diwali festival.

     

    Superintendent Rawlinson expressed his thanks for the close partnership working and to Clair Green, Declan Khan, Peter Clifton, Matt Leng and Tamara Djuretic for their support and constructive meetings over the past few months. This had helped to enforce the rules around social distancing in the Borough. The approach had been largely ‘engage, explain’ and very little enforcement. Each of the three Boroughs in the BCU has a dedicated ‘Covid car’ to deal with calls, and the pandemic remains a challenge.

     

    The Chairman asked about current staffing levels in the BCU. Superintendent Rawlinson responded that the vacancies in the Schools Team had been filled via secondments. The Ward Teams and Safer Neighbourhood Teams are fully staffed. The vacancy rate across all levels in the BCU is currently around 3%. 

     

    The Chairman enquired about the reduction in robberies in Barnet over recent months. Superintendent Rawlinson responded that in Barnet robberies have largely been youth on youth, and the offending pattern had changed with school closures. The Safer Neighbourhood Teams and Covid Response Teams had been redeployed to parks and open spaces which may have helped to reduce the incidence of robberies.

     

    The Chairman asked for an update on the Barnet Police Station. Superintendent Rawlinson responded that this would be considered by the management team as part of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Forward Plan/Proposed Items for next meeting, 22 January 2021

    ·       Performance update (relevant to all priority areas of the Community Safety Strategy)

    ·       Family Services – Youth Justice Board update (relevant to Priority 4 of the Community Safety Strategy)

    ·       Report on the key findings of the 2020 Annual Community Safety Strategic Assessment (relevant to all priority areas of the Community Safety Strategy)

    ·       Reducing Offending Group update (relevant to Priority 5 of the Community Safety Strategy)

    ·       Safeguarding Adults Board update (relevant to Priority 4 of the Community Safety Strategy)

    ·       Update on the Barnet Zero Tolerance to Hate Crime Project (relevant to Priority 7 of the Community Safety Strategy)

    ·       Update on the MOPAC London Crime Prevention Fund (LCPF) Projects (relevant to all priority areas of the Community Safety Strategy).

     

     

    Minutes:

    Ms Green reported that the Forward Plan is being developed with partners to provide a longer-term view, of up to 18 months, of the key issues and when they would be brought to the Board. This would be subject to change further to engagement with partners and services and any changes would be agreed with the Chairman outside the meeting.

     

    The Board resolved to note the Forward Plan and items for the next meeting.

     

10.

Any Other Business