New unit for tackling violent crime

Sussex is one of 18 areas to receive Home Office funding to create a Violence Reduction Unit [VRU] that will bring together police, local authorities, health and community leaders to identify root causes and drivers of violent crime and co-ordinate a response.

Sussex Police received £880,000 which follows the £1.34m that has been secured in the county to combat serious violent crime. Combined with other successful bids it means Sussex Police and partners have received just over £3m to address youth crime and exploitation, knife crime and modern slavery.

Each unit will be tasked with delivering both short and long-term strategies to tackle violent crime, involving police, healthcare workers, community leaders and others.

The £3 million received by Sussex comes from a £100m Serious Violence Fund announced in March.

Police & Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “The public health approach to violence reduction that was pioneered in Scotland will be extended and adapted in 18 areas of England and Wales.

We know that it works. Our early intervention ‘REBOOT’ programme is already having an immediate and positive impact for young people, their families and their communities, and I am very keen to see more targeted partnership interventions at the prevention stage that the VRUs will lead.”