Assertive new action on London transport safety

Wednesday, 28 May, 2008

Safety and security on London's transport system was at the forefront of a new initiative launched in May by the Mayor, Boris Johnson, Met Commissioner, Sir Ian Blair and Transport Commissioner, Peter Hendy.

For the first time, high visibility teams of crime fighters will be dedicated entirely to policing bus hubs and the immediate vicinity, confronting crime and anti-social behaviour as it happens and reassuring the travelling public.

An additional 440-uniformed officers will be used to establish the new teams and will be supported by 1,600 Special Constables. Each team will made up of one sergeant, one police constable and seven PCSOs. The new teams will be deployed into a variety of interchanges across the capital, specifically targeted at those areas experiencing the greatest problems.

'Building Bridges' With Local Schools

Highbury West Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) and Islington Safer Schools Officers were 'Building Bridges' with two local schools through an innovative new project, aimed to educate young people about the effects of anti-social behaviour.

Working with the Angel Shed Theatre Group, 50 students took part in the workshops, which were run by officers with the aim to improve relations and build trust in an informal way.

'Building Bridges' aims to divert the young people away from anti-social behaviour. During the workshops, which were held at the schools, the young people were educated about the negative effects of anti-social behaviour, and officers and pupils worked on a play about the same issue. The workshops were led by four Police Community Support Officers - two from Safer Schools and two from Highbury West SNT. The play was based on the theme of 'Respect' and the young people and two Police Community Support Officers starred in the play.

Sergeant Rob O'Connor from Highbury West Safer Neighbourhood Team commented that
policing wasn't all about enforcement. It was also about working with the community and gaining their trust. He also hoped that they had broken down a few barriers in terms of how the young people view the police.

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