Last week in Cirencester I launched the first of six County wide Roadshows, which will take place over the next few weeks.
It’s an ideal opportunity to meet face to face with the public and a chance for my team and the Constabulary to talk about what we are up to, listen to your concerns and, hopefully, empower communities to take an active part in making Gloucestershire safer.
What came across loud and clear at our Cotswolds session was how annoyed and tired you are of persistent speeders. I heard it time and time again during my election campaign, so it was no surprise.
Over the last few months, I have been working hard to develop a new approach to Community Speed Watch using low-cost technology that can spot persistent speeders and then pass that information to the police. The Constabulary will then send out warning letters to offenders, giving them a chance to change their behaviour. If that has no effect and further action is required, the Constabulary will do so through enforcement.
Official visits to the homes of offenders can also be arranged.
Another of our initiatives is to expand our Special Constabulary by re-introducing the Parish Constable (an effective and popular scheme that started in the 12th Century).
What I would like to see is older people coming forward – whether in work, semi-retired or retired – who are keen to serve in an official capacity and do more to protect their communities. To support this initiative, I want to recruit 150 more Special Constables and introduce a new idea of Voluntary Police Community Support Officers. This would perhaps be more suited to the older applicant, as it is a less demanding role than the traditional warranted role of a Special.
These Parish Constables would be at the centre of their community, organising their Community Speed Watch activity, expanding Neighbourhood Watch schemes, and signing up more residents to the vitally important Your Community Alerts, the free messaging email system that provides information about crime prevention, such as how to protect yourself against internet and phone scams.
I hope you will consider attending one of my 5 remaining roadshows in your area to learn more about all of these issues by going to the OPCC websitehttps://www.gloucestershire-pcc.gov.uk/
Our first event was warmly received by the public, so I am sure you will find them interesting and informative.