Includem has welcomed today’s publication of the Strategic Police Priorities for Scotland and welcomed the opportunity to be part of the drafting process.
We particularly welcome the emphasis on prevention and the recognition of the importance of partnership working in order to achieve better outcomes.
The Strategic Police Priorities for Scotland document states:
By increasing emphasis on early intervention and prevention, efforts can be focused at a national, regional and local level in order to stop problems before they start. This approach allows us to use our resources more effectively, reducing the future demand not only on the police service but on the range of other public services who are also involved in dealing with the wider effects of crime.
We would absolutely support this approach and would highlight a number of innovative projects across Scotland which do just this – not just reducing offending and re-offending but deal with the underlying risk factors and causes of offending.
One such project is Includem’s IMPACT programme – working in partnership with Police Scotland to reach out to young people and young adults aged 14 to 21 who are causing the most harm in their communities – particularly focusing on violent and persistent offending. IMPACT focuses on those young people who are not engaging with any other service and are most likely to serve repeated periods of custody due to the serious nature of their offending.
Through this highly effective partnership working with Police Scotland and other agencies, we are able to divert this hard to reach group of young people away from further offending and to build the resilience and self-esteem necessary for them to avoid the cycle of involvement with the criminal justice system.
Listen to a podcast of one of the young people who has benefited from the IMPACT programme – Murray:
Includem has recently published the results of an external evaluation of the IMPACT programme which highlights the importance of partnership working and early intervention. You can read the full report here.