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Funding secured for Safer Streets

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The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley has secured nearly a million pounds to make streets safer and to tackle violence against women and girls (VAWG).

The Government has announced £23.5m for police and local authorities to make streets safer, and the Thames Valley has been successful in two bids to claim a portion of the pot.

Bid one (£513,940) focuses on the ward of Chalvey, in Slough, to tackle crime including causing sexual activity without consent, sexual assault/indecent assault, unwanted sexual touching and street harassment.

Police and Crime Commissioner for Thames Valley, Matthew Barber, said: “Both bids support immensely vital areas of work, highlighted in the worst ways in recent events, and I’m very pleased to be able to secure this funding to continue the good work my Office is doing with our partners in Slough and Oxford.

“The funding will enable a range of initiatives in Chalvey which include street guardianship, the Design Out Crime Co-Design Project, specialist intervention and community work to tackle issues in the Roma community, a specialist youth and community worker, supporting and enabling young people to develop their own communications project, and development of the schools-based Choices Programme to focus on the safety of women and girls.”

The second successful bid, for £426,000, focusses on Oxford City centre and places of travel to and from the centre including Abingdon Town Centre, Witney and parts of South Oxfordshire. This bid also focuses on VAWG crimes including street harassment, stalking, sexual assault, rape, unwanted sexual touching and predatory behaviour.

Matthew continued: “This bid seeks to make nights out safer by focusing on the journey from home, into the city and back again. We recognise the fear and concerns some women will have in making these trips. Key areas for this work will focus on communications, engagement, physical improvements, guardianship and transport.

“It goes without saying that everyone has the right to feel safe in their communities and these projects are just part of our work to make Thames Valley an even safer place to live.”

The third round of funding for Safer Streets was announced yesterday [3rd October] and more information can be found on Gov.uk.