City Centre Policing – what do you think of it?

City Centre Policing - any comments?

City Centre Policing - any comments?

The monthly police City Centre Tasking meeting is tomorrow morning. The area it covers is the main City Centre retail/business district, along Broad Street/Brindleyplace, and Southside.

Are there any points you would like me to raise? If possible please send me any comments by 10am on Friday, but feel free to raise things between meetings too.

More about the Tasking Meeting….what it is, and issues so far….

What is the Tasking Meeting?

It is intended to help the police and other participants to understand and resolve on a day-to-day level whatever the issues are that bother residents, security staff, businesses, and other organisations around the city centre. Attendees try to work out the best way to tackle them together, and all attendees are expected to help and participate in initiatives in whatever ways are appropriate, not just to come along to complain. The main meeting meets monthly, sub-groups (such as the group tackling aggressive begging) as appropriate. Actions, or ‘Tasks’, are tracked.

Participants have included representatives from the Police, City Centre Wardens, Shopping centre Security, transport, residents, and so on.

Bigger, more strategic level, issues that cannot be handled in this ‘local’ ‘on-the-ground’ fashion are escalated to the Safer City Centre Forum. We also have a City Centre Neighbourhood Forum representative on this, so there will be continuity following up issues of concern to residents.

Broad Street area disruption at night

The biggest issue for residents has been that of disorder and noise in the areas near to late night entertainment areas, particularly in the side streets off Broad Street and in Southside. In the August meeting we updated on the initiatives around Broad Street to tackle these problems. During weekends in July, the police targeted the area and stopped a large number of cars. Several drivers were not wearing seatbelts. Others had the over-dark film on their windows torn off on the spot. Several other offences were discovered. The police also made their presence felt later in the night when drunken people leaving clubs often cause disruption for nearby residents. They publicised their attention on the area, including on local radio, in the hope that this too would help deter poor behaviour. The police were very pleased with the results of their actions, commenting that the number of problems they found more than justified the special targeted efforts, and also proved how justified residents had been to complain. However the kind of behavioural changes we hope for take time, so further, similar, efforts are planned.

I also raised all the other points raised to me. Many thanks!

What points should I be making this time?

One thought on “City Centre Policing – what do you think of it?

  1. dxn7

    Hi. I find your report of the police’s comments on Broad St policing very illuminating. “During weekends in July, the police targeted the area and stopped a large number of cars. Several drivers were not wearing seatbelts. Others had the over-dark film on their windows torn off on the spot.” I am sure this was quite easy to do for the police, yet I fail to see how this contributed to making the area safer? If people want to drive without a seat belt, that is ultimately their problem and the police ought to focus on higher level offences.

    Here are some suggestions

    (1) Illegal U-turns on Broad Street – even though these are clearly not allowed. It is difficult to not see this being done if you walk along Broad St any night.

    (2) Unlicensed taxis touting for business. This is clearly a safety concern, if vulnerable (i.e. inebriated) people choose to use these. One day I was “offered” a ride by two such unlicensed taxis.

    (3) Taxis honking horns. This is a particular bug bear for me as concerns taxis touting for business outside the Snobs night club, as this honking is the main source of noise late at night that I hear. The Highway Code clearly states that horns should not be used in this way.

    (4) Anti-social behaviour at night. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon to see people urinating in public at night. Presumably a reason for this is the lack of any public conveniences at these times. General anti-social behaviour also occurs in the city centre core at night – e.g. I once witnessed a group of people deposit a stolen road sign in the Chamberlain Memorial.

    (5) Policing of protests. I hope that we do not have any return of EDL protesters. I feel those protests last year were completely mismanaged by the police and it is unfortunate that the police have failed to acknowledge this or apologise.

    However, more concerning is the upcoming conservative party conference at the ICC. I understand that some groups have made threats of violent behaviour. It would be nice to hear how the police plan to deal with the situation to ensure everybody’s safety, whilst minimising disturbance to the local area?

    (6) Drug dealing. This is not a big issue in my experience, but I have seen the same car parked at a location on Bristol St clearly dealing drugs on two occasions, separated by over a month. It is unfortunate that dealers can feel confident enough to so obviously deal and to return in the same flamboyant style to the same location on more than one occasion.

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