Warwickshire is one of the safest places to live, work and visit in the country. Our cases of serious violence, particularly those involving a weapon, remain low for the region and nationally.
But we cannot be complacent.
As a county we are not immune from the impacts of serious violence, be that as a result of organised criminality and county lines, as a result of local street gangs, or linked to the violence in a public place. The physical and psychological damage that Serious Violence can cause to individuals, families, our communities and wider society, is immeasurable. Even one death or life-changing injury in Warwickshire as a result of Serious Violence, is one too many. Together, we should have a collective ambition of zero incidents of Serious Violence in the county.
And preventing Serious Violence does require a collective and collaborative approach. No one agency alone can prevent Serious Violence. It is everyone’s responsibility. Police action alone will not solve the societal problems that underpin the causes of violent crime. It requires a long-term, whole-system, multi-agency solution.
This means a combined, sustained effort by all key organisations. We need to make this effort, not only to protect our communities today, but to make a generational change that will protect the communities of tomorrow.
But if we want to prevent Serious Violence from occurring in the first place and make a difference over the long-term, we need to understand the causes of Serious Violence in Warwickshire; and what we can do individually, together, and with our communities, to remove those causes, and prevent the cycle of reoccurrence.
This is why partners in Warwickshire, including the Police and Crime Commissioner and his Office, have come together with a vision to make Warwickshire a place where people recognise the causes of violence, break the cycle and prevent further serious violent crime occurring, thereby reducing serious violent crime rates in the county.
Serious Violence Prevention (SVP) Partnership Delivery Group
The SVP Partnership Delivery Group is one of two operational delivery groups of the Serious Organised Crime and Serious Violence Executive (SOC-SV Executive), which in turn reports to the Safer Warwickshire Partnership Board (SWPB). The Group provides a mechanism for the development, management and monitoring of strategies, interventions and budgets which enable partners in Warwickshire to meet the requirements of the Serious Violence Duty.
The Serious Violence Duty (SVD) was introduced by the Police Crime Sentencing and Courts Act 2022 and requires specified agencies to work together to prevent and reduce serious violence in a local area. In Warwickshire these are:-
- North Warwickshire Borough Council
- Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council
- Rugby Borough Council
- Stratford District Council
- Warwick District Council
- Warwickshire County Council
- Probation Service
- Youth Justice Service
- Chief Officer of Warwickshire Police
- Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Authority
- Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care Board (ICB)
The act also stipulates arrangements for collaboration with schools, prisons and youth custody facilities.
The Police and Crime Commissioner is not a specified authority under the SVD but has an important role in leading, supporting, joining up, and monitoring the work being undertaken. A representative from the Commissioner’s Office is a member of the SVP Partnership Delivery Group and his Deputy sits on the SOC-SV Executive. The Commissioner’s Office is also the Grant Recipient for SVD funding and is responsible for administering it on behalf of the Home Office, including making grants to specified authorities to support delivery of the SVD.
A key requirement of the SVD has been to undertake a Strategic Needs Assessment in relation to serious violence in the county, and to formulate and implement a strategy to reduce and prevent that serious violence. Both requirements have been completed and the latest copy of Warwickshire Serious Violence Prevention Strategy can be found on the Safe in Warwickshire website. Work is now underway to deliver the aims and objectives of the strategy through a partnership delivery plan.