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 Newry, Mourne and Down Policing and Community Safety Partnership Chairperson, Councillor Alan Lewis following his appointment as Chairperson of the PCSP with (left to right) Police Service of NI, Chief Inspector Johnston McDowell, Police Service of NI, Sergeant Ryan Duffy, Newry, Mourne and Down Safer Communities and Good Relations Manager, Martina Flynn and Police Service of NI, Sergeant Gerard Doherty.
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Successful partnership working between Newry, Mourne and Down Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) and the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) was highlighted at the recent International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference.

The international conference is the largest and most significant global law enforcement event. It was originally scheduled to take place in New Orleans from 11 to 14 September, however as a result of the impact of the Hurricane Ida on the Louisiana area, all conference activity was moved online.  

The Chairperson of Newry, Mourne and Down PCSP, Councillor Alan Lewis said, “This joint presentation at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference, was an excellent opportunity to profile the work of Newry, Mourne and Down Policing and Community Safety Partnership, highlighting the breadth of community engagement activity which we have taken forward with the PSNI across our Council district. The opportunity to showcase some of our most significant achievements to an international audience has allowed us to develop new links and share practices across the international policing community.”

Cllr Lewis continued, “As the only presentation shortlisted for inclusion on the conference programme from outside the USA, this is a testament to the strength of work being carried out in our district.”

The PCSP and the PSNI presentation focused on successful community police engagement across the Council district. In the last year, over 500 young people have taken part in a range of diversionary programmes; the development of The Paulie Project Road Safety Documentary which has now had 65,000 views online, the installation of 14 Speed Indicator Signs across the district, and the further extension of the RAPID Bin initiative which has resulted in over 75,000 items of prescription medicine being removed from local RAPID Bins.

The Policing and Community Safety Partnership and the Police Service of Northern Ireland have also worked together to develop the Kid’s Court Initiative across the district. Motorists apprehended for speeding offences outside a local Primary School appeared in front of a ‘Jury’ of Primary 7 Students, aged between 11 to 12-year olds, to explain why they were speeding, rather than receive a fine and/or penalty points.  This has been a hugely impactful piece of work and can be viewed below.

During the COVID-19 lockdown, the Policing and Community Safety Partnership and The Police Service of Northern Ireland community public engagement work moved online delivering a series of digital engagement clinics with Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinators across the district.  ‘Scambassador Training’, to raise awareness of the escalating issue of scams and Domestic Abuse training, to raise awareness for employees in the hair and beauty industry, were both highly successful virtual workshops.

Our Council area will soon be the first in the UK to have a bespoke Mobile Police Engagement Vehicle which will add further value to local community engagement activity, especially for young people and other communities who may be considered ‘hard to reach.’ 

For further information on the work of the Policing and Community Safety Partnership please contact their Office on pcsp@nmandd.org

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