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Crime Prevention

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 3 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps her Department has taken to seek to achieve reductions in levels of (a) burglary, (b) vehicle crime and (c) violent crime since 2004. (251343)

The Government’s Crime Strategy “Cutting Crime: A New Partnership 2008-11” published in 2007 outlines a refreshed approach to tackling crime which ensures that crime and disorder reduction partnerships (CDRPs)/community safety partnerships (CSPs), including the police, identify and tackle issues of local concern. This approach was further strengthened by the CDRP/CSP reform programme which requires these local partnerships to identify crime types and give sufficient weight to tackling them.

The Government have exceeded their PSA target 1 “To reduce crime by 15 per cent. and further in high crime areas by 2007-08” as measured by the British crime survey with a reduction of 18 per cent. from the 2002-03 baseline year.

With regards to the specific categories of crime:

(a) Burglary

We have taken forward work on priority concerns including work with prolific and other priority offenders; developing partnerships between the police and local authorities to improve the security of homes and businesses; and raising awareness of security measures through campaigns such as the “Let’s Keep Crime Down”. The Home Secretary is also planning to chair a summit meeting of national organisations on 4 February 2009 to take forward new measures and support people in hard times.

(b) Vehicle crime

Along with domestic burglary, vehicle crime has been included within the definition of serious acquisitive crime, as part of our new set of PSAs and is included under national indicator 16 in the national indicator set for local area agreements and in PSA23 strand 2. ACPO’s Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service has worked with police and other practitioners to address vehicle crime. Recorded crime statistics for offences against vehicles have fallen 39 per cent. since 2002-03 (which is the baseline year) compared with 2007-08.

(c) Violent crime

The Government’s approach to tackling violent crime is outlined in the publication “An Action Plan for Tackling Violence” which details the Home Office’s priorities with respect to serious violence including work on guns, gangs, knives, domestic and sexual violence. We have also taken forward the Tackling Violent Crime Programme, the Tackling Gangs Action Programme and the Tackling Knives Action Programme. New measures to tackle violent crime have also been enacted in the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act and the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006.