All PCC candidates called upon by MP to adopt an early intervention approach

Posted on 1 October 2012 (Permalink)

<!--[if !supportLists]-->· Graham Allen MP, author of two reports to HMG on Early Intervention, wrote to all Police and Crime Commissioner candidates today calling on them to adopt early intervention policies as their Unique Selling Point in their relationship with the police. He argued that instead of treading on operational toes, PCC's can bring a strategic and long term view to reducing crime which officers and taxpayers will welcome. They are also perfectly positioned to build the strong partnerships with health, education and third sector and explore the role of evidenced based programmes, social finance and payment by results in reducing crime. The idea of Early Intervention is to tackle social problems before they arise, pre-empting criminality and  saving the police, taxpayer and Government billions in the long-term. This has always been the root of good policing, and even Sir Robert Peel rightly put the early intervention of preventing offences ahead of the late intervention of catching offenders.

Graham argued that “We should be looking to prevent crime before it occurs.  With the right early intervention policies, we can forestall many of the mental and social problems which are factors in generating anti-social behaviour and crime later in life.  Early intervention has the ability to break the cycle of dysfunction which can turn families into repeat offenders.  It can do this much more cheaply and reliably than intervening later, and generate lasting savings for local budgets and lasting gains in the quality of life for local neighbourhoods.

“It is easy to overlook the fact that the most effective and long-term forms of crime prevention begin through pre-emptive action as babies, children and young people grow up.  This is why I want to make candidates aware of the importance of intervening early and the difference it can make.”

The aim of early intervention is to give every baby, child and young person the social and emotional skills to make the best of themselves.  Research evidence overwhelmingly demonstrates that dysfunction in families, which produces low social and emotional capability in babies, children and young people, can lead to severe adverse consequences including later criminal or anti-social behaviour.

Police and Crime Commissioners will be elected for each police authority area on 15 November for the first time.

Graham said, “We need to attack the causes of crime at the source and early intervention does that.  Police and Crime Commissioner candidates should be looking seriously at the benefits of early intervention and, if elected, should look to introduce early intervention programmes to reduce crime and save money.”