Agenda item

Community Safety Agreement 2023 - 2026

Report of the Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture


[Catherine Mann, Assistant Director for Culture, Rural and Safer Communities and Trish Caldwell, County Commissioner, Regulatory Services and Community Safety, in attendance for this item.]


Members considered the report and heard from the Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture.


The Community Safety Agreement (CSA) outlined the key community safety priorities for Staffordshire. The CSA is reviewed and refreshed every three years and is mandatory for two tier authorities, helping to meet the statutory duty under Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (as amended by the Police and Justice Act 2006) in which responsible authorities are required to consider crime and disorder in the delivery of all their duties.


Staffordshire County Council must meet the obligations of the statutory duty but also had an additional role in providing the overarching governance for the Community Safety Partnership (CSP) priorities. The 2023-2026 CSA aimed to develop a joined-up approach to public service delivery, to enable more effective and co-ordinated strategic planning across partner agencies and to ensure sustainable and lasting improvements in delivering outcomes. It recognised that community safety issues did not always respect district boundaries, and that coordination of effort could lead to economies of scale, and more effective outcomes.


The Staffordshire Community Safety Partnership, known as the Safer and Stronger Communities Strategy Group (SSCSG) was responsible for the efficient and effective delivery of the Staffordshire Community Safety Agreement priorities to comply with statutory responsibilities. Members received details of the partnership’s priorities and performance against these.


The Committee scrutinised details of: community cohesion and tackling extremism; fraud; local priorities; anti-social behaviour; safeguarding vulnerable persons and child exploitation; and Domestic Abuse (DA). Members had previously scrutinised the new contract for DA and asked for a future report to consider progress with this.


Members were aware that Staffordshire County Council was the specified authority for tackling extremism under the Prevent Duty. They were informed that at the latest Prevent board a presentation had been delivered by a Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU) analyst, providing reassurance on the referral process within Staffordshire.  The number of referrals converted to cases progressing to Channel was 25%. However, whilst they were informed that this was significantly higher than other authorities within the West Midlands,   the Committee felt they were unable to establish whether this was positive as they had no reference point to understand what number the 25% figure represented. They were informed that this figure evidenced the effective training and awareness raising which resulted in high quality and appropriate referrals. Whilst the Committee accepted this, they remained concerned that they were unable to establish what local threat existed on the basis of the information provided. The Committee were aware of the sensitive nature of this information. It was suggested that the Chairman, on behalf of the Committee, could receive an overview of the CTU briefing to help establish the parameters of any current threat and risk.


The Chairman shared with Members that he had been offered, on behalf of the Committee, the opportunity to see a redacted copy of the Local Plan for counter terrorism, which would enable  him to share with Members whether there was reassurance from this. The Chairman thanked Officers for arranging this.


Members noted that Safer Streets Fund monies had been allocated to Newcastle-under-Lyme, Burton and Stafford following a successful bid by the Staffordshire Commissioner’s Office and partners. Detail of the Stafford funding was requested by Stafford Committee Members.



Resolved: That:

a)   details of the Community Safety Agreement 2023-2026 within Staffordshire be noted;

b)   an item be included on the Committee’s work programme to scrutinise progress with the new Domestic Abuse contract;

c)   the Chairman, on behalf of the Committee, receive an overview of the CTU briefing to help give parameters to any current threat and risk; and,

d)   detail of the Safer Street Fund successful bid for Stafford be forwarded to Cllr Edgeller and Cllr Pardesi.


Supporting documents: