Joint Scrutiny Committee






Report of Head of Housing and Environment

Author: Diane Foster (Licensing and Community Safety Manager) and

Karen Brown (Community Safety Team Leader)

Telephone number: Diane Foster 01235 422116
Karen Brown 01235 422592

Email:  or

Cabinet members responsible:

South Oxfordshire – Cllr Maggie Filopova-Rivers


Vale of White Horse – Cllr Helen Pighills


To: Joint Scrutiny Committee

DATE: 16 November 2021



South and Vale Community Safety Partnership – performance report


(a) To note the progress that the South and Vale Community Safety Partnership (CSP) made in 2020-21 in delivering its priorities and statutory functions 

(b) To support the CSP’s view that the 2021-22 plan will continue to deliver core priorities and statutory functions and focus on these three key priorities:

·         tackling domestic violence and abuse, including early intervention to reduce harm and improving services for victims

·         working with vulnerable people and children to reduce the likelihood of being exploited

·         reducing serious youth violence, knife crime and harm and vulnerability caused by drugs and alcohol



Purpose of Report

1.     The main purpose of this report is to update the scrutiny committee on the progress that the South and Vale Community Safety Partnership (CSP) is making to reduce crime and the fear of crime, focusing on the benefits it generates for residents, businesses and partner agencies in the two districts.  



2.     The CSP was formed in April 2011, bringing together the two-existing district CSPs that were created in accordance with the requirements of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.  This was done so that the partnership was coterminous with the local police area and mirrored the shared working across the district councils.

3.     Under the umbrella of the CSP, a wide variety of local agencies work together to maintain low levels of crime and protect vulnerable people in both districts to ensure residents feel safe and stay safe.

4.     The CSP involves the community safety portfolio holders from both district councils and officers representing:


·          South Oxfordshire District Council

·          Vale of White Horse District Council

·          Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)

·          Oxfordshire County Council (OCC)

·          Thames Valley Police (TVP)

·          National Probation Service

·          Sovereign Housing Association

·          Soha Housing

·          Oxfordshire University Hospital Trust

·          Oxfordshire County Council Fire & Rescue Service


5.     The CSP has a statutory duty to develop and publish a plan which sets out its priorities, actions and measures.  The 2021-22 plan is attached as Appendix A.  When drafting the plan and to meet our statutory duties, we review information from the Oxfordshire Strategic Intelligence Assessment along with the Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner’s (PCC) plan and consult with numerous agencies. The Oxfordshire Strategic Intelligence Assessment is attached as Appendix B.

6.     The CSP has a statutory duty to monitor the effectiveness of its plan which is does through quarterly performance reports that are reviewed at quarterly meetings.


7.     To help the CSP deliver its priorities and statutory duties, it receives funding from the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC).  This income stream is not secure and is agreed on an annual basis.  The CSP’s 2020-21 grant funding from the PCC was £106,846. This funding has been slightly reduced to £105,831 for 2021-22.

8.     The CSP uses the funding to support local projects that it believes will help to deliver its priorities.  Managed by the districts’ community safety team, this involves overseeing the CSP grant application process, directing Service Level Agreements (SLAs), monitoring contract compliance and running the CSP budget group to ensure accountability and proper governance.  In 2020-21, the community safety team managed SLAs on behalf of the CSP for a range of projects, including outreach and diversionary projects for young people who are vulnerable and displaying ‘risky behaviours’ and the small repairs scheme run by Mears that helps people who have been a victim of crime remain and feel safe in their own homes.

9.     The CSP financial summary for 2020-21 can be found in Appendix C.


Delivering the community safety partnership’s statutory duties and three key priorities – summary of key areas of work in 2020-21


anti-social behaviour

10.  There are a number of statutory functions relating to anti-social behaviour (ASB) that the community safety team is responsible for delivering:

Statutory responsibility

Relevant legislation

Public Spaces Protection Orders (currently in place in Thame, and Henley) to tackle anti-social behaviour

see paragraph 39


Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014

On behalf of the CSP, managing the Community Trigger process
see paragraph 15


Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014

Managing the process for the issuing Community Protection Notices (non-noise related)
see paragraph 17


Supporting police applications for Closure Orders
see paragraph 31



11.  If residents don’t feel able to report ASB directly to the police, they can contact the district councils’ community safety team to report the incident.  The issues reported to the team are varied and complex.  They range from neighbour disputes to abuse and harassment.  We investigate and risk assess cases, working in partnership with relevant agencies and provide updates to the complainant until the issue has been resolved.  This service provides residents who are unable or unwilling to report ASB to the police with an effective alternative reporting option.  The community safety team works to ensure that appropriate and joined up action is taken by agencies to resolve cases.  If someone is at risk of danger the team always recommend contacting the police as they are a 24/7 service.

ASB case Vale

Issue - a Registered Social Landlord (RSL) raised a case surrounding multiple calls of ASB and drug related activity coming from one of its properties in Abingdon. The complaints to the RSL primarily surrounded the smell of cannabis and noise nuisance coming from the address. 


Impact – Multiple calls from residents in the area were made to the RSL and the Police. Residents claimed that the tenant was unreasonable and would not listen to their attempts to mediate.


Actions – Thames Valley Police liaised with the housing officer from the RSL to devise an Acceptable Behaviour Contract (ABC) for the resident at the address. Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) regularly patrolled the area and conducted joint visits with the housing officer to the property to provide advice on their behaviour and give them support with drugs and alcohol by referring them to Turning Point.


Outcome – Resident signed an ABC and agreed to improve their behaviour and to stop having visitors at the property. The housing officer and PCSOs continued to regularly visit the property and resident. A community ASB survey was conducted by the housing officer and the results demonstrated that there had been a significant decrease in complaints in the area. The Police also saw a decrease in calls and demand for the address reduced significantly.



ASB case South

Issue – A resident from Wallingford contacted the community safety team to report an issue of an unsupervised dog in a local park. The complainant detailed that they had witnessed a dog roaming the park and causing alarm and distress to a blind man and his guide dog. The complainant reported that the owner of the unsupervised dog was unreasonable and made no attempt to control the dog when asked.


Impact – The blind dog owner was familiar with the route through the park but became worried about walking through the park with his dog.


Actions – The complainant detailed that the owner of the dog was known to them and provided their contact details. The community safety team sent an advisory letter to the subject of the complaints (owner of unsupervised dog) to provide some general advice on how their dog’s behaviour was impacting the complainant. The neighbourhood policing team were also notified and a local PCSO confirmed that they would continue to patrol the area and provide some advice to the dog owner if identified.


Outcome – The subject of the complaints called the community safety team and detailed that they recently got a new puppy and was struggling to keep him under control. Advice was given to the subject and they agreed to keep their dog on a leash whilst walking in the park to prevent any further distress on the complainant. No further complaints were received by the community safety team.



12.  In addition, the CSP helps to fund local community-based projects that aim to improve young people’s resilience and divert them away from committing ASB. Funding this year has been provided to Didcot Train, Nomad in Henley, and DAMASCUS who cover South Abingdon and surrounding villages.

Outcomes from a CSP funded ASB diversionary project in South and Vale (names have been changed to protect the individual’s identity)


DAMASCUS – Provided support during lockdown to vulnerable young people focussing on self-esteem, mental health, drugs and alcohol, sexual behaviour, ASB, poor parental control and discrimination in South Abingdon and surrounding villages.


Case study – young person CDS


Conversations with CDS highlighted the lack of support for older and more isolated residents in the area.  We worked with CDS and other young people to create and deliver over 100 care packs for residents and local families.  The project gave younger and older generations the opportunity to interact and find common ground.  Building on this common ground resulted in doorstep bingo being formulated.  We worked with CDS and four other young people from South Abingdon to organise and help on the days we hosted the events.  We witnessed a positive change in attitude and self-confidence.  The bingo proved popular for many residents, especially the older residents who were able to get some fresh air and chat with their neighbours whilst adhering to the social distanced guidelines.  Some of the residents recognised CDS and the other young people but had avoided contact in the past but after six weeks this was no longer the case and a sense of community had been created.  This project had a positive impact for the mental health of everyone involved during a difficult time.


Nomad - Provide targeted support for young people and families disadvantaged through economic and/or complex social issues in Henley and surrounding villages.


Case study – young person TP


TP is 16 and recently finished year 11.  They come from a family where the mother is an alcoholic and the young person has displayed many risky behaviours.  Home life is volatile and chaotic.  TP approached Nomad because they hadn’t been enrolled in college and needed help with the process.  We subsequently liaised with Reading college to secure them a place on one of their courses.  We have also been involved in the transitions meetings to ensure they receive the necessary support.  We were able to provide some emergency funding to purchase a bus pass for TP to be able to attend.  Because of our previous support work and trust earned this young person felt comfortable asking for help.


Didcot TRAIN – Engage disadvantaged young people in positive activities, whilst empowering and providing young people with opportunities and tools to make the right decisions, rather than becoming involved in ASB and being disengaged with the local community.


Case study – young person Z


Z has been engaging with us since the end of 2019, initially through our Dinner and Debate project.  Z regularly engages in ASB and gets in a lot of trouble at school for missing lessons and starting fights both physical and verbal with his peers.  The young person faces struggles with their home life, mental health and has a lot of difficulty with their anxiety.  Z does not communicate their emotions well and often appears angry or impolite.  Z is good at forming relationships but struggles to keep them as he is unable to move on after altercations with peers and professionals.  During lockdown Z started to engage in our virtual hangouts and reach out for chats with youth workers online.  This has helped Z improve their communication skills and now communicates in a more effective way due to being more aware of their emotions.  Z has also reached out for help and advice with their mental health and chose to engage in virtual hangouts instead of going out to potentially engage in ASB.    




13.  The community safety team is responsible for running Joint Tasking Meetings (JTM). These meetings maximise partnership working to make best use of resources.  They problem solve complex cases to support the most vulnerable people in our community.  Officers from Thames Valley Police, Community Safety, Adult Social Care, Children’s Social Care, Environmental Health, Housing, Soha, Sovereign, Mental Health, Fire & Rescue, Trading Standards and other agencies share resources, knowledge and data on a monthly basis to support:


·         repeat victims of ASB

·         medium/high risk ASB victims

·         families in need of intervention to avoid ASB

·         domestic abuse victims

·         prolific offenders

·         vulnerable individuals (e.g. rough sleepers, individuals at risk of radicalisation, concerns of child exploitation)

·         individuals with complex needs that do not meet the threshold for a safeguarding referral


Joint Tasking Meeting (JTM) Case Study

At JTM, we review the top 10 frequent callers to the police regarding ASB, to see if they are known to other agencies and if further partnership action can be taken to try and address the issues. One case from quarter 3 related to a man who the police were worried about because of the frequency of his calls to them. At JTM, we were able to confirm that he was known to Adult Metal Health Team (AMHT) and had been admitted to a psychiatric hospital. He was also known to Turning Point and because of the case discussion at JTM, their service manager was able to liaise with AMHT to ensure that a consultation regarding support around substance misuse could be arranged when the man was discharged. Since these interventions, the man has not been flagged as a frequent caller to the police.



14. The two-community safety officer’s co-ordinate and chair monthly ASB neighbourhood meetings across the local police areas to ensure they are accountable, effective and inclusive of relevant agencies.  Due to the pandemic, face to face meetings were replaced with virtual meetings and where partners were unable to attend and the meetings did not take place, information was exchanged via email.    

Data to help demonstrate the added value of the multi-agency South and Vale ASB NH (Neighbourhood) meetings in 2020-21


·         Consistant multi-agency engagement at all meetings, involving the police, the district councils’ community safety and environmental protection teams and numerous registered providers (e.g. Sovereign, Soha, TVH, Green Square, Catalyst).

·         26 meetings held in the year:

o   5 – Abingdon

o   4 - Didcot and Wallingford

o   8 - Wantage and Faringdon

o   9 - Thame and Henley

·         Total number of cases raised - 64. Wantage & Faringdon addressed 24 cases, Didcot 16, Abingdon 13 and Thame and Henley 11.

·         The most common issue raised at NH meetings in 2020-21 was regarding drug related ASB (18 cases), followed by neighbour disputes (13) and public nuisance (11).

  • Number of cases resolved - 34 (the remaining were considered ‘on-going’ as at 01/04/20 and still actively on the meeting agendas).
  • Most common outcomes from cases being raised at the NH ASB meetings in 2020-21 were:

o   Achieving an improved multi-agency response around enforcement (e.g. joint visits, joint drug swabbing) - 37 cases

o   Securing a more joined up approach to supporting both victims and subjects of ASB cases to tackle the issues (e.g. working together to refer people to additional support e.g. Turning Point, checking if additional agencies need to be brough in to ensure people are receiving support from mental health services and/or social care) - 34

o   Reduction in ASB - 32 cases

Please note that some cases achieved more than one of the listed outcomes.



Case example which shows improved multi-agency enforcement and support:

Issue – Soha Housing and Thames Valley Police were receiving multiple reports from residents regarding the smell of cannabis and general ASB issues from a Soha owned property. The case was raised at the Didcot ASB meeting to gauge previous or ongoing partnership involvement from the attending agencies.

At the meeting, it became clear that agencies other than Soha and TVP (i.e. community safety, environmental health) had also been contacted by residents regarding the issues.

Impact - The calls to the Police were having a significant demand on the resources of officers and residents were becoming increasingly frustrated with the subjects of the complaints.

Actions – Representatives from TVP and Soha conducted multiple joint-visits to the property to take drug swabs as evidence as a breach of tenancy agreement. The assigned housing officer from Soha collated all contact that was made to partners and evidence to build a casefile against their resident to seek an injunction, The community safety team liaised with the Adult Mental Health Team and District Council’s Housing Needs team about the potential implications of the resident leaving the property. A history of alcohol and drug abuse was discovered, and the resident was provided with the appropriate advice from their housing officer to help them get support for their mental health and alcohol/drug use, including Turning Point and GP. An officer from the Housing Needs team conducted multiple visits to the subject off the back of this contact to try and assess their need for temporary or permanent accommodation moving forward.

Outcomes - Reports continued to be made about the anti-social behaviour of the Soha tenants, which led to an injunction being granted and Soha are now proceeding with action through the courts to grant mandatory possession of the property. The Housing Needs team remain in regular contact with the resident to ensure that they do not become homeless as a result of the court proceedings.


15.  The CSP has a legal duty to provide a Community Trigger, in accordance with the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.  This mechanism gives victims and communities the right to require agencies to review cases of persistent anti-social behaviour if they feel the issues have not been properly addressed already.  The trigger could be activated by a member of the public, a community or a business.  Rather than set up a new panel, the CSP use JTM as the ASB case review panel for the statutory Community Trigger process which maximises resources and ensures that information is properly shared across a broad range of agencies.  The Community Trigger process is managed by the community safety team and we received six requests last year of which five met the threshold.  Four ASB case reviews were carried out (two trigger requests related to the same neighbour dispute so were covered in the same review). 

16. Of the five community triggers actioned in 2020-21, four have been completed                                          and closed.  One trigger remains open as the action plan is being delivered but has not yet been completed.  With regards to the four triggers that have been completed, no further complaints have been received relating to ASB but a concern was raised about noise nuisance and advice was provided. 


Community Trigger case study


Location of ASB

Nature of ASB

Agencies involved

Stages of trigger process completed

Outcomes from case review


Neighbour dispute - mainly around on-going noise/ behaviour of children 

Environmental Protection


Registered Social Landlord (RSL)


Thames Valley Police (TVP)


Children’s Social Care (CSC)

Threshold met


Case review meeting held


Outcomes of review tabled at JTM and approved


Action plan delivered


CT closed

Recognition that:

·         relevant agencies had already taken some proportionate steps to help address the neighbour dispute and support both parties

·         there had been a joined-up approach between agencies

·         there were no current safeguarding issues.


Additional actions:

·         increasing support to and engagement with victim (RSL)

·         ensuring party wall is not unduly exacerbating the transfer of noise between properties (RSL)

·         offering to reinstall noise recording equipment (VWHDC)

·         continuing to monitor good neighbour agreement, keeping CSC informed of any relevant subsequent tenancy sanctions being progressed (RSL).







17.  The community safety officers work closely with partners to deliver warnings to offenders whose behaviour has a detrimental impact on others.  Failure to comply may result in a Community Protection Notice being served.  One community protection warning was issued in 2020-21 for a neighbour dispute impacting on two sets of neighbours.  The behaviour ceased; therefore, a community protection notice was not issued.  Due to a breach of a community protection notice issued in 2019-20 a fixed penalty notice was served; payment was received, and the issues have now ceased. 

18.  The community safety team co-ordinate the installation of guardcams (covert cameras) in response to incidents of ASB, burglary and domestic abuse.  The device is normally put in place for up to three months to capture future incidents and provide additional security and reassurance.  After three months the situation is reviewed with the referring agency and resident.  Unless there is a particular need to keep the camera in place, the resident can purchase the device from the CSP, or it will be removed for use at another property.   It’s hard to gauge the degree to which the guardcams contributed to the resolution of the issue(s) but we do know that they provide reassurance to residents who want to feel safe remaining in their own homes.  There is a clear audit trail in place and the community safety team is responsible for retrieving and reviewing any evidence captured.  A total of 72 cameras were installed in 2020-21 compared to 49 in 2019-20. 11 people chose to retain their cameras and purchased them from the CSP.  Feedback from one of the residents who purchased a camera described how she was very happy with the service received from both the community safety team and the contractor who installed the camera, and how much safer she felt for knowing it was there and for her teenage son.

19.  Between July 2020 and March 2021, the community safety team ran a pilot project offering mediation to assist partner agencies in tackling anti-social behaviour complaints between two households. The service, funded by the South and Vale Community Safety Partnership (CSP), was delivered by Mediation Bucks at no cost to referring agencies or to residents who take part.  Due to Covid-19 restrictions, all mediation was delivered remotely via virtual communication platforms (e.g. Zoom) or over the telephone.  


20.  The team is currently reviewing the pilot project in detail and will share its findings with the CSP with the aim of agreeing how the Partnership should access mediation services on a longer team basis.



Summary of outcomes:


·         Total number of cases where the mediation service was offered to one/both parties: 22

·         Total number of referrals made to the mediation service - 10

·         Number of completed cases that involved mediators – 6

The remaining four cases no longer required mediation as the issues were resolved and no further reports received.  

·         Number of cases where the mediators met all parties – 2

·         Number of cases where there was a Joint Meeting – 2

·         Number of Joint Meetings that reached an agreement – 2

In seven cases an agreement was reached which did not result in a joint meeting, but mediators were involved. Only one of those cases an agreement was breached, and further incidents were reported.  They are receiving support from Environmental Protection. 




Case Study


A couple were living next door to a single man. The man complained about the noise the couple were making and the case was referred to Mediation Bucks by the Community Safety Team. Our mediators met with the couple and the man separately on Zoom and they both agreed to come to a Joint Meeting again on Zoom. At the Joint Meeting, they both explained how the situation affected them which helped them see the other person’s point of view. The mediators helped them work through their issues and this resulted in a 15-point agreement detailing the actions they would take to resolve the dispute. Since the mediation, the Community Safety Team has received no further complaints or reports from either party involved.




21.  The community safety team co-ordinate the Safe Places scheme in partnership with multi agencies, such as the police, fire and rescue, Oxfordshire Family Support Network and local businesses.  The scheme helps vulnerable people feel confident and safe whilst out in the community.  If someone feels they are being abused or harassed whilst they are out in the community, they have a safe place to go.  Window stickers are displayed in public places such as shops, libraries, community and leisure centres to identify themselves as Safe Places.  As of 23 March 2020, 79 schemes were in place across Abingdon, Faringdon, Wantage and Grove, Didcot, Wallingford, Henley, Thame and in the villages of Goring, Woodcote, Sonning Common, Wheatley and Chinnor.   The details can be found on our website here.  In 2021-22 the community safety team will review our safe places, to ensure the businesses signed up are still open for business and importantly, willing to continue their participation. They will continue to raise awareness of the scheme through social media and town and parish newsletters and aim to expand the scheme into Botley.




22.  The CSP provides funding to the Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Service (ODAS) to deliver outreach and support for women, men and children whose lives have been disrupted by domestic abuse in South and Vale.  In 2018-19 A2 Dominion and Reducing the Risk were awarded the contract to deliver this service for the whole county and West Berkshire.  In addition to outreach, they set up and run support groups and enable those in need to draw upon a range of resources, for example, providing a local help-line service (0800 731 0055) and refuge accommodation.  In 2020-21, the service received a total of 1,757 calls to their helpline, of which 406 were from residents in South and Vale which equates to 23 per cent.  This compares to 1,892 calls in 2019-20 of which 312 were residents in South and Vale equating to 16 per cent. 90 per cent of the calls received came from women and where callers disclosed their age, the largest proportion of callers were between 35 to 49 years old.  Every helpline call receives safety planning, emotional support, signposting support to relevant services (housing, legal support, counselling) and help to access emergency orders.


23.  The main objective of outreach is to support people to reduce the risk towards them and to help them achieve independence, either through orders or going to refuge/places of safety.  A total of 232 clients were referred for outreach support in 2020-21.  Of these 45 were from South Oxfordshire and 40 from Vale of White Horse equating to 37 per cent of Oxfordshire.






Increased feelings of safety





Increased independence/empowerment





Better able to recover and cope with aspects of life





Improved mental wellbeing





Signposted to other services





Planned exit





Safety planning completed for victim and/or children











24.  A further 80 clients were supported by Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVA) who support high risk victims of domestic abuse.  31 were from South and 49 from the Vale.  The majority of referrals came from victims themselves, which highlights the importance of the continued need to raise awareness of domestic abuse services to ensure victims know who to contact for help and support.  The community safety team promote the helpline number on the district councils’ webpages and through social media.






Increased feelings of safety





Increased independence/empowerment





Improved mental wellbeing





Signposted to other services





Planned exit





Safety planning completed for victim and/or children











25.  The CSP continue to provide support to victims of domestic abuse by co-ordinating sanctuary scheme works to help vulnerable victims of crime stay and feel safe in their own homes.  In 2020-21 the community safety team co-ordinated 60 referrals compared to 42 in 2019-20.




26.  The CSP also fund a small repairs/security works to help private tenants/owner occupiers at risk of domestic abuse stay and feel safe in their own home.  11 properties received security works in 2020-21 compared to 23 properties in 2019-20.  Security works can include a change of locks, fire-proof letter boxes, or covert guard cameras. The total cost of sanctuary works to the CSP in 2020-21 is £985 compared to £1,485 in 2019-20.   Please note this sum does not include the costs of installing covert cameras. The Community Safety Team co-ordinate referrals for guard-cams (covert cameras) in response to domestic abuse and 35 cameras were installed in 2020-21. Feedback from one client who received works claimed the security works had helped her sleep better at night.  After being shown by the engineer the quality of the image of the guard camera and the area that can be captured if triggered, she now feels much safer.  


27.  The CSP has a statutory duty to conduct Domestic Homicide Reviews (DHRs) under the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act 2004.  A Domestic Homicide Review (DHR) is a multi-agency review of the circumstances in which the death of a person aged 16 or over has, or appears to have, resulted from violence, abuse or neglect by a person to whom they were related or with whom they were, or had been, in an intimate personal relationship, or a member of the same household as themselves. The main aim of a review is to establish what lessons can be learned regarding the way in which local professionals and organisations work individually and together to safeguard victims.  The community safety team is responsible for managing the DHR process and providing administrative support.







Thame (two murders, one attempted murder)


Review approved by Home Office. Action plan completed

Joint Serious Case Review (SCR) and Domestic Homicide Review (DHR) Didcot


Review approved by Home Office. Action plan completed

Hales Meadow (manslaughter)


Home Office requested further amendments to this review.  Report resubmitted to Home Office in August 2020

Didcot (three murders)


Review approved by Home Office.  Action plan completed

Watchfield (one victim)


Review approved by Home Office. Action plan completed

Kennington (one victim)


In progress


28.  Since their introduction in 2011, there have been 13 DHRs in Oxfordshire, four of these have taken place in South Oxfordshire and two in Vale of White Horse.  Oxford City has carried out four reviews, one has taken place in West Oxfordshire and two in Cherwell.

29.  During the pandemic, the community safety team have worked with comms to promote domestic abuse messages to raise awareness of local support available using the government campaigns, for example, At home shouldn’t mean at risk and Ask for ANI (Action Needed Immediately), codework scheme to enable victims of domestic abuse to access immediate help from the police or other support services, from the safety of their local pharmacy Ask for Ani



30.  The community safety team have been working on projects to prevent children from being exploited.  They have co-ordinated a virtual delivery of “Chelsea’s Story”, a hard-hitting play that shows how young people are can be groomed by adults for the purposes of sexual exploitation using various methods, ensnaring young people and eventually taking complete control and dominating their whole lives.  Due to the pandemic this play has been rearranged several times throughout the year due to children not being in school.  However, the play is being delivered to eight secondary schools in July 2021 and further secondary schools in October 2021.

31.  From 1 November 2015, specific public authorities have a duty to notify the Secretary of State of any person identified in England and Wales as a suspected victim of slavery or human trafficking.  The CSP has developed a multi-agency response to tackling exploitation in South and Vale through the JTM meetings and this partnership approach addresses the threat, harm and risk of County Drug Lines, local Organised Crime Groups, Child Drug Exploitation, Labour Exploitation and Criminal Exploitation.  Closure orders are a tool that the police use to try and tackle the problem relating to abuse of vulnerable people and their properties.  The orders close down or restrict access to properties that are known to be used by drug gangs and the community safety team is consulted before the police apply to the courts.  In 2020-21, 20 closure orders have been issued by the police in South and Vale compared to 35 in 2019-20.  The closure orders have a positive impact on residents as they give them back control over who can access their property. 



32.  These closure orders are often welcomed by vulnerable people whose lives have been taken over by organised crime groups.  The orders help victims feel protected and in addition with other security works, they feel safe in their own homes.  A breach of a closure order can result in a fine, imprisonment for up to three months, or both.

33.  As part of anti-slavery day on 18 October 2020, the community safety team raised awareness of labour exploitation by promoting the “Just Good Work” app, through social media, which provides information and advice in several languages to help workers and job-seekers understand about the recruitment process, what employment conditions they should expect, how to raise issues and help plan journeys to and from work.


34.  Under Section 26 of the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 local authorities have a duty to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.  The Licensing and Community Safety Manager attends the Oxfordshire Channel Panel meetings when a South or Vale referral is on the agenda.  Channel provides a mechanism for ensuring that individuals identified as vulnerable to radicalisation are referred to and assessed by a multi-agency panel which decides on the most appropriate support.  The Channel process uses existing partnership working between the police, local authorities, statutory partners, and the local community to support those who are vulnerable to being drawn into violent extremism by: identifying individuals and groups at risk of being recruited by violent extremists; assessing the nature and extent of that risk through multi-agency panels; and referring cases to intervention providers (as required) to develop the most appropriate support package to safeguard the individual at risk. In addition, low level intelligence/cases of concern relating to Prevent (for example, protest marches, internet propaganda) are shared at monthly Joint Tasking Meetings and relevant partnership action is agreed.


35.  The community safety team continue to promote messages from Action Fraud and Get Safe Online through our social media platforms throughout the year.  This year the team have focused on scams relating to the pandemic to help residents protect their identities and keep safe whilst on- line and on their smart phones to prevent them from being exploited.




36.  The community safety team support the licensing and responsible authority meetings, a multi-agency group that pools resources to tackle premises of concern, reduce late night violence and associated crime and disorder.   This year the focus has been to ensure Covid compliance and provide support to premises as lockdown restrictions ease.  Where there has been a breach of regulations, a multi-agency approach has been taken to prevent any reoccurrence and offer reassurance to communities. 


37.  To support vulnerable young people across South and Vale, the community safety team introduced in March 2021 a Violence Reduction ‘Hub’ to bring together the voluntary sector to provide a joined-up approach to delivering positive pathways and alternative activities for young people.  The aims of the ‘hub’ is to build community resilience, problem solve issues in relation to serious youth violence, reduce demand on statutory services, explore collaborative engagement, provide intervention and diversionary strategies. 


38.  The team have been working on projects with Thames Valley Police to raise awareness of youth violence and to prevent children from carrying knives.  They have co-ordinated a life choices event piloting with four local secondary schools.  The project has involved the charity Prison! Me! No Way!  (PMNW).   PMNW involves two prison officers and a prisoner who presents their life story to young people and shares the impact prison life and crimes has had upon them, their family, victims and future life aspirations.  The project also includes a replica life size prison cell van for young people to visit.   The day also featured Thames Valley Police True Costs campaign that focuses on drug abuse and exploitation, a talk on knife crime that involved a poster competition to measure how this message was received.  This project was delayed due to the pandemic and delivered in June 2021.  The team are currently evaluating the project.


39.  In 2018, the district council introduced PSPOs in Thame and Henley to help the police tackle alcohol related ASB. In Thame, the order also covered group related ASB. The orders last for up to three years so prior to their expiry, the community safety team carried out a review to clarify their use and identify if there was a need to extend or vary them. As part of this work, the team consulted the police and then sought feedback from key stakeholders, including the Town Councils, Oxfordshire County Council, local councillors and the local Pubwatch groups. Taking the outcome of this review into account, the district council agreed to extend the alcohol restrictions in both towns so that police can continue to ask people to stop drinking alcohol or confiscate their alcohol if they are behaving (or are likely to behave) anti-socially.  In Henley, the police also now have the power to require groups of three or more people to disperse if their behaviour is causing alarm, distress, harassment, or a nuisance.  This measure is already in place in Thame but, following an increase in issues in the local area, the area it covers has now been extended to include Church Road and the cricket field. If someone fails to co-operate with either request when asked they can be fined.  The measures only target anti-social behaviour and will not prevent groups from gathering peacefully or people from drinking in public areas. Both orders remain in place until May 2024.


40.  The Community Safety Manager attends the Safer Oxfordshire Partnership Co-ordination Group which meets quarterly to share information on current crime issues, priorities, and forward plans.  The group aims to identify any overlapping work streams and gaps ensuring that all boards and partnerships are clear where and how the main risks are being managed.


Anticipated direction of travel for the CSP in 2021-22

41.  The CSP receives all its funding directly from the PCC to support the delivery of his plan.  The new PCC was elected in May 2021 and the Police and Crime Plan 2021 - 2025 was launched on 30 June 2021. It is therefore important that we ensure that we take the PCC priorities into account when setting our own plan.  The South and Vale CSP 2021-22 rolling action plan was signed off by CSP members in September 2021.



Financial Implications

42.  The Safer Oxfordshire Partnership Co-ordination Group receives the funding for Oxfordshire and agrees the formula for allocation with partners.  The South and Vale CSP received £106,846 grant funding for 2020-21 and will receive a slight decrease of £105,831 for 2021-22.

Legal Implications

43.  None


44.  None

Other Implications

45.  None.


46.  The CSP continues to deliver projects to meet the needs of local communities and ensure that statutory functions are delivered.  The CSP will continue to focus on protecting and safeguarding vulnerable people. 

Background Papers

·        Appendix A – South and Vale CSP Plan 2021-22

·        Appendix B - Oxfordshire Strategic Intelligence Assessment 2020-21

·        Appendix C – South and Vale CSP financial summary 2020-21