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Declarations of Disclosable Pecuniary or Personal Interests and Non Disclosable Pecuniary/Other Interests
No declarations of interest were made.
that the minutes of the meeting of the Panel held on 23 July 2020, be received and approved as a correct record.
The Service Manager, Scrutiny and Democratic Services introduced the report and welcomed everyone to the meeting. Members were reminded that they had been working on the Community Protection Service review since January 2020 (over the course of three Panel meetings) and had examined the origins of the service, the Community Protection Team’s current working practices, the ongoing difficulties officers faced undertaking the role and their ongoing priorities for reducing crime and anti-social behaviour within Ashfield.
The Panel had also spoken to the Council’s Service Manager for Community Safety and two Community Protection Officers at a previous meeting to garner their perspective on how they undertake their duties and manage the day to day requirements of the role. Members had also been interested in how the Community Protection Team worked in partnership with the Police through the Integrated Hub based at the Council offices. Comments had also been sought from the Police Chief Inspector, Mark Dixon, regarding the partnership working currently taking place.
During the nine months since the start of the review, the Council had taken on board the interim comments and suggestions emerging from the Panel and had took the opportunity as a result of certain job positions becoming vacant, to review the service and restructure the team accordingly. The restructure has also been influenced by the recommendations from the recent Council Peer Challenge undertaken earlier in the year, to reshape the service.
The Panel were therefore being asked to take stock of the current position and recognise how well the review has progressed since the start of the year. It was acknowledged that the new Community Protection Team, once fully staffed (recruitment was still ongoing), would need time to establish itself prior to any further consideration by the Panel regarding its future direction and effectiveness as a service.
It was therefore suggested that Members consider the submission of a set of interim recommendations to Cabinet to acknowledge the current position and to enable work to commence on embedding the new Community Protection Team into the Council’s establishment.
Director of Place and Communities - Restructure and Current Position
The Director of Place and Communities firstly thanked the Panel for their contributions towards the facilitation of a new Community Protection Team as part of the review process.
Community Protection Service Restructure
Having acknowledged that the previous Service Manager, Community Safety role had been mostly office based, it had been agreed that the post would be split into two new Team Leader positions which would ensure both officers would have increased flexibility to be out on the District leading their teams as required.
The first Team Leader, Craig Day, had been recruited and he was due to start the role on 7 November 2020. The second Team Leader post was currently going through the recruitment process and would be finalised within the next two weeks.
Following a successful open day for the recruitment of Community Protection Officers, three officers had been appointed and were due to begin training with the Police ... view the full minutes text for item SB.6