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NATIONAL COMMUNITY SAFETY PLAN (NCSP)

Q. Where did the idea for a National Community Safety Plan come from?

The 2004 White Paper ‘Building Communities, Beating Crime: A better police
service for the 21st century” contained a commitment to produce a community
safety strategy in 2005.

We recognise that community safety cannot be successfully delivered by the


police alone - broadly-based partnerships are vital. Working together is the only
way to achieve our goals. That is why we have decided to move beyond an
annual National Policing Plan to a National Community Safety Plan.

It is sometimes difficult for local delivery partners to see evidence of cross-


departmental planning when the Government launches new initiatives with a
community safety aspect. This can leave those at local level – who are essential
to successful delivery – uncertain about overall Government community safety
priorities. The Plan addresses this issue.

Q. How does the NCSP define ‘community safety’?

Community safety has always been a difficult concept to define rigidly. Usually,
the priorities of local communities drive the scope of community safety activities
at a local level. Our definition of community safety must therefore reflect the
breadth of understanding in the wider community. Community safety means more
than the more commonly used ‘crime reduction; or ‘crime prevention’. In using
‘community safety’, we recognise that we should focus attention not only on
efforts to reduce or prevent crime and disorder, but also on introducing social and
economic change as a way of preventing crime and disorder from taking place.
‘Community safety’ activities will aim to reduce offending behaviour and also the
harms experienced by individuals and communities because of crime and
disorder and will seek to improve their quality of life through efforts to change the
wider physical and social environment.

Q. What are the aims of the NCSP?

The Plan has 3 aims. We want it to:

• give a clear view of central Government community safety priorities;

• act as tool for driving delivery of a shared community safety agenda, and
as a starting point from which to develop new ways of working across
central government; and
• underline central government’s expectations of key delivery agencies,
including:

 the Police
 local authorities
 local partnerships (Local Strategic Partnerships, Crime and
Disorder Reduction Partnerships (CDRPs)and Drug Action
Teams (DATs))
 Local Criminal Justice Boards
 Primary Care Trusts
 Children’s trusts
 Fire & rescue services
 JobCentre Plus
 The Business Community
 Youth Offending Teams
 The Private Security Industry

It has added value by providing clarity when considering community safety in the
planning of departmental PSA objectives and targets, and by improving the
relationship between programmes for better delivery on the ground.

Q. How does the NCSP encourage and support community engagement?

The Plan puts communities at the heart of community safety by underlining the
drive to get them to identify the community safety priorities for their
neighbourhoods and then to work with key agencies to see them tackled
effectively. The main vehicle for doing this is through effective community
engagement supported by local partnership activity - and in community safety
terms, the principal partnerships are Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships
and Local Strategic Partnerships, particularly in Local Area Agreement areas.
Local Area Agreements are an important means of engaging with local
communities, particularly on community safety issues.

Q. What are the NCSP’s key messages?

• The NCSP supports a much closer collaboration between central and local
government and our other partners at local level in the setting of priorities and
the development of new policies and initiatives.

• Community safety cannot be delivered by the police and other agencies


working in isolation. Effective partnership working at national and local level
is the only way to achieve community safety goals.
• Strong and active communities are at the heart of the plan, recognising the
vital contribution that voluntary and community groups make to community
safety

• Active citizens are needed to help identify community safety priorities in their
neighbourhoods and to work with agencies to make sure they are tackled

Q. Which Government departments are involved in the NCSP?

• Communities and Local Government


• Department for Education and Skills
• Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
• Department for Constitutional Affairs
• Department for Culture Media and Sport
• Department of Health
• Department of Trade and Industry
• Department for Transport
• Department for Work and Pensions
• HM Treasury
• Home Office

Q. What about the devolved administrations?

Some of the measures described in the Plan (those concerned with policing)
apply to both England and Wales. Others apply only to England, since wider
community safety responsibilities have been devolved to the Welsh Assembly
Government.

The Plan does not extend to Scotland since the Scottish Executive has
responsibility for policing and community safety policy. It does not apply to
Northern Ireland where the Criminal Justice Directorate of the Northern
Ireland Office is responsible for the implementation of Northern
Ireland's Community Safety Strategy, launched in 2003.

Q. Why publish an Update?

The NCSP has been very well received by our key partners and stakeholders.
They have valued the clarity the Plan has brought to the community safety
agenda. The update builds on this.
Q. Does the Update replace the NCSP 2006-9?

The Update does not replace the NCSP 2006-9. It supplements it by:

• showing the progress made on 2006-7 key actions;

• reviewing key community safety priorities for 2006-9

• highlighting specific key actions for 2007-8; and

• setting out the roles of some additional key players.