Sussex Police is running a campaign over two weeks starting on Monday (18 November) with a focus on coercive and controlling behaviour in a domestic context, as part of ongoing awareness raising on domestic abuse.
The campaign aims to shed light on the wider aspects of non-violent domestic abuse, and helping people to recognise the subtle signs of coercive control.
The campaign launches a week ahead of White Ribbon Day on 25 November and its associated 16 Days of Action to encourage a wider conversation around coercive and controlling behaviour. While this predominantly affects women, with recent national data showing that 95% of coercive control victims are women and 74% of perpetrators are men - anyone can be affected and can report it as domestic abuse and criminal behaviour.
Detective Chief Inspector Richard Bates of Sussex Police said: “In 2015, coercive control was recognised in law as a form of domestic abuse. This marked a huge step forward in tackling domestic abuse. But we want to make sure that everyone understands what it is.
“Domestic abuse isn’t always physical. Coercive control is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim. This controlling behaviour is designed to make a person dependent by isolating them from support, exploiting them, depriving them of independence and regulating their everyday behaviour.
Read more here.
Sussex police officer increase on track
Sussex Police remains on track to increase police officers this year.
Chief Constable Giles York has confirmed the force is on track to see 2,725 officers in post by March 2020 – 176 more than a year ago.
The question was one of a number put to the Chief Constable by the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne at the most recent Public Accountability and Performance Meeting (PAM) held on Friday (November 15).
Setting out the force plan to recruit additional numbers current figures show there were 2549 officers in November 2018, 2,610 officers in March 2019, rising to 2,649 in October and 2,725 predicted by March 2020. The increase takes into account those leaving the force, including through retirement.
Mr York told the meeting: “We are growing as an organisation and we continue to grow the number of police officers. The numbers highlighted above show that we are recruiting people faster than those leaving the force.
“Just last month we took on an extra 36 officers over and above the existing plans we had in place and these officers are already in training.”
The additional posts form part of the force’s on-going transformation plan to strengthen local policing, improve public contact and modernise policing including through advancing technology.
The plan will also see an additional 100 PCSOs by next March, bringing the total number to 296.
The next PAM is due to be held on Friday 13 December.
Sussex Police commended for leading fight against gender inequality
Chief Constable Giles York and Superintendent Miles Ockwell have been commended for their commitment to gender equality in UK policing.
They were given a Special Recognition Award at the British Association of Women in Policing ceremony in Lincolnshire. The award was granted to the pair for their significant contribution to gender equality and service to women in policing as thematic champions for the United Nation’s global HeforShe movement.
Chief Constable Giles York, the Global Thematic Champion for Law Enforcement, said: “As a leader, son, husband and father, I believe that enabling true gender equality is a shared responsibility. Men and women have a joint responsibility to achieve gender parity.
“In supporting HeForShe, Sussex Police is demonstrating the strength of our commitment to ensuring a Police force that is representative of the communities that we serve which is key to addressing violence against women and girls. Superintendent Ockwell has been instrumental in our support to HeForShe and I would like to praise his outstanding contribution to this movement.”
HeForShe was created by UN Women, the United Nations entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women in society. The movement is supported globally by 2 million people, including world leaders and global CEOs including Winston Duke and Edgar Ramirez. Read more here.
Sussex charities benefit from sales on police eBay shop
Sussex Police has raised almost £850,000, much of it for local charities, from the sales of seized and found property on its eBay site.
Items such as paintings, bikes, laptops and watches, which would otherwise have been disposed of by other means, are sold on the site, along with assets no longer required by the force.
The majority of the money made on the online auction shop, launched in October 2015, is put into the Police Property Act Fund (PPAF) and divided amongst charities the force supports.
Facilities Specialist Services Manager Natalie Tipler said: “We have had nearly 29,000 transactions since the launch of our eBay shop and the money made from the majority of these items will go on to benefit charities across Sussex.
“We have a dedicated team who are trained to assess each item we receive and whether they are fit for sale, have value or need to be disposed of.
“Since April this year, we have had a number of high-value items which have attracted a lot of bidding attention. For example, we sold a Cartier Santos watch for £4,750, a Ridley Noah bike for £925 and a Panasonic camera for £972.
“There are some things, of course, we can't sell on eBay like tobacco and alcohol. We do make sure that everything we sell is genuine and not counterfeit, like designer clothes, watches and perfume.
“Where we can sell an item we will. We tend to live by the moto ‘one person’s junk is another person’s treasure’, and even now are frequently surprised by how much some items sell for. There are still lots of bargains to be had each week so everyone benefits.”
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Anna Habdas (Police, Prevention Support and Engagement Officer, Sussex)