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Friday, 25 April 2014

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Crime commissioner to launch charitable trust for victims

Cumbria's Police and Crime Commissioner Richard Rhodes will launch a charitable trust next year which he says will focus on “the needs of victims”.

Richard Rhodes photo
Richard Rhodes

The plan is mentioned in Mr Rhodes’ Christmas and New Year message.

In it, he speaks of having had a busy year in his job, which involved more than 70 public engagements but it was a year “not without its difficult challenges and decisions”.

Mr Rhodes said he likes to spend as much of his time as possible speaking directly to people to hear their views about policing in Cumbria.

“I have received more than 5,000 pieces of correspondence and I am always grateful for the warm welcome that I receive,” he writes.

“I am looking forward to working with the people of Cumbria in the next year.

“Importantly, I am pleased to say that Cumbria remains one of the safest places to live, work and visit. This has been achieved despite a reducing budget.”

As the budget reduces, says the Commissioner, hard decisions will have to be made.

“However, many of you have told me when I have been out and about that you want to see as many police officers as possible and as a result I have committed to maintain police officer and PCSO numbers at the same level for this and the next financial year.

“Much of the work undertaken in 2013 starts to come into fruition in 2014.

“One of the initiatives that I am extremely pleased about is that a county-wide solution for CCTV will be achieved.

“The new system will use the latest technology in key locations to help support and reassure people.

“During the year three leaders of partner organisations have been working hard on review papers that set the way forward for victims, domestic abuse, sexual violence, restorative justice and youth justice.

“In 2014, I will be launching a charitable trust and this will be focusing on becoming a victim’s champion and advocacy service.

“There will be a good opportunity to influence the services locally when funding from the Ministry of Justice moves across to the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner.”

One of his first duties in the New Year will be to appoint a permanent Chief Constable.

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