Who will you spend Christmas with? A Paramedic, a Firefighter, a street pastor or even a Police Officer?

December 12th, 2017 by

This festive season, as many of us drink more than intended, a new campaign is urging people to think about how and who they want to spend their Christmas with.

The Safer Cornwall partnership festive safe drinking campaign asks people out enjoying festivities over the coming weeks to drink sensibly while enjoying Cornwall and Christmas, not to risk spending time somewhere they would rather not be – whether in a police cell or a hospital.

Drinking too much can impact on our already stretched services such as the NHS and Police force. Those services will be more than happy to help if you really need it, but they don’t really want to spend time with you because you’ve had too much to drink.

Sally Hawken, Cornwall Council Cabinet member for Wellbeing and Public Health said: “Drinking more than normal can bring on a false sense of confidence. This can lead to bad choices or decisions, such as drink driving or getting into arguments and fights. In a few cases, this can lead to people ending up in hospital, losing their drivers licence, getting fined, being arrested, or having accidents which put themselves or other people in danger”.

“The Council and its partners hope everyone enjoys the festive season. People should rightly be able to have fun, but we also want people to be safe. This campaign reminds people to drink sensibly, and to plan how they’ll get home safely.”

Jez Bayes, Alcohol strategy lead for Cornwall Council’s Drug and Alcohol Action Team said: “We don’t want to be the Christmas Grinch and say that you shouldn’t drink at all, because we know that for most of us that’s not going to happen! What we’re asking is that people go out and have fun in a way that doesn’t impact on others, or potentially affect their own future.

Top tips to enjoy Cornwall and drink sensibly this festive season:

  • Alternate alcoholic drinks with soft drinks or water
  • It’s safest to stick drinks you’re familiar with, so that you know how you will react
  • Keep an eye on your drink when out, and don’t get to the point where you wouldn’t notice if someone spiked you
  • Plan how you will get home – book a taxi in advance, organise a lift, or have a designated driver in your group
  • Don’t attempt to reason with people who have drunk too much
  • Say thanks to anyone out there to keep you safe: door staff, street pastors, police, paramedics

 

Copy of the Festive Drinking Posters

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Criminal cash to fund #BrewsWithBlues – free cuppas with Newquay police

November 28th, 2017 by

The proceeds of crime are being used in a new initiative to bring police closer to hard-to-reach communities in Newquay.

#BrewsWithBlues is a project being run in cafes across Newquay when members of the public are invited to drop-in for a free cuppa with local police. The cost of the scheme is funded by money recovered from the Proceeds of Crime Act.

It was the idea of Neighbourhood Beat Manager PC Alex Allen with PCSO Ben Pessl taking the initiative forward in Newquay.  Alex had become aware of a scheme run in 50 states in the US called ‘Coffee with A Cop’ which proved to be a great way to enable the police to interact more successfully with the communities they serve. The programme has now spread to Canada, Europe, Australia and Africa.

Alex said: “The key to Coffee with a Cop’s growing success is that it opens the door for interactions outside of crisis situations bringing law enforcement officers and community members together. We know that most people still value face-to-face contact and this will be in a relaxing and informal environment. It will improve not just safeguarding but intelligence by building relationships in an agenda-free environment.”

Ben said: “#BrewsWithBlues will be a one team approach and won’t just involve neighbourhood officers but the wider police family from all areas including CID and Response. We will be promoting the many ways we engage with the community including social media and Neighbourhood Alert and will be able to signpost people to services that may be able to help them with particular issues. We will be there to listen to people’s issues and concerns.

“We are initially running 45-minute drop-ins once a week for eight weeks. We are anticipating that it will attract the retired who may feel a little vulnerable, parents after they have dropped their children off at school, migrant workers and some unemployed who may be feeling at a loose end and would welcome somewhere to go on a cold winter’s morning.”

The cafes which are participating are:

  • Driftwood Kitchen on Cliff Road
  • Tom Thumb, East Street
  • Toast Café, Central Square
  • Pavilion Bakery, Fore Street

The dates of the events will be advertised locally in the town and on social media. The project will be launched at the first #BrewsWithBlues event which will be on ???? and is an opportunity for the media to do interviews.

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Do you know who has police powers?

November 27th, 2017 by

Devon and Cornwall Police and Cornwall Council are raising awareness of a scheme which gives some police powers to certain individuals working for local authorities and private-sector organisations.

The Community Safety Scheme (CSAS) has been running for some years but looks set to be used more with Cornwall Council introducing its Public Space Protection Orders which can result in dog owners being fined for failing to pick up dog mess, not keeping their dogs under control or on a lead in certain areas.

Three groups of staff employed by Cornwall Council have been given CSAS accreditation by Devon and Cornwall Police:  three tri-service officers (who have a joint role with the three emergency services); five anti-social behaviour caseworkers and 13 members of the community and environmental enforcement team. All have access to and share information and intelligence with Devon and Cornwall Police.

The tri-service officers’ can require names and addresses in situations including anti-social behaviour; confiscate alcohol in designated public places and from young people (who they can also confiscate tobacco from); require the removal of abandoned vehicles and carry out some traffic control duties.

The anti-social behaviour caseworkers can require names and addresses for anti-social behaviour and the enforcement officers can require names and addresses for an offence causing injury, alarm and distress to another person as well as for anti-social behaviour.

It is an offence not to comply with requests of an accredited person relevant to their powers, such as require name and address.

A town council and four organisations who run events have also received CSAS accreditation for some of their staff.

St Ives Town Council has three staff who can require the name and address of a driver or pedestrian ignoring appropriate directions and who can control traffic; Bradsons Event Services has 15 staff who have these powers as well as having the power to stop cycles whilst JPS Events Services has 65 staff who can control traffic. Full details of all organisations who work across Devon & Cornwall can be found on the website. https://www.devon-cornwall.police.uk/advice/your-community/your-opportunities-to-help/community-safety-accreditation-scheme-csas/.

To use these powers accredited persons must be on duty in full uniform, display a CSAS patch on their uniform and possess a power card and police issued ID.

Partnership Superintendent for Cornwall Matt Longman said: “The scheme underpins our commitment to work in partnership with local organisations to provide a safer community and improve the quality of life in Devon and Cornwall, allowing these organisations to be recognised as part of the extended policing family. They work in partnership with our neighbourhood policing teams.”

Organisations are invited to consider applying for the scheme if they have

employees committed to providing private security, community safety, or traffic management functions. To find out more go to https://www.devon-cornwall.police.uk/advice/your-community/your-opportunities-to-help/community-safety-accreditation-scheme-csas/.

Becki Brodest-Nott, CSAS Manager for Devon and Cornwall Police added: “There are a number of benefits of the scheme including reassurance to members of the community of the training and vetting completed by accredited persons. It also allows better communication and improved relationships between the police and partner agencies to tackle anti-social behaviour and other low-level crime and disorder, which impacts significantly upon communities across Devon and Cornwall. The accreditation of limited but targeted powers allows accredited persons to be more effective in the role they already undertake, but more importantly assists with ensuring safer communities for all to live, work and visit.”

Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Environment & Public Protection, Sue James said: “Giving greater powers to tackle anti-social and nuisance behaviours to more staff within Cornwall Council and our town councils has to be good news for residents. As residents see more people out in their communities with the power to act against dog fouling, under-age drinking and smoking and abandoned vehicles for example, I hope they will feel safer. I also hope that more town and even parish councils, might consider the benefits and want to get involved.”

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Safer St Austell – Litter Pick

October 13th, 2017 by

Local agencies within Safer St Austell, came together this week to litter pick Truro Road park, Priory car park, Holy Trinity Church and Cemetery Park St Austell.

In total 16 sacks of rubbish were collected, helping to improve the St Austell’s environment. Cosgarne Hall provided some well needed refreshments once the work was completed.

 

Agencies taking part included Cosgarne Hall, Addaction, Freshstart and Cornwall Council.

St Austell Town Councillors Tim Styles and Anita Cohen came along too.

As part of Safer Cornwall, Safer St Austell aims to improve community safety locally.

For concerns about rubbish such as glass and needles on the street, call Cornwall Council Refuse and Recycling on 0300 1234 141 or email refuseandrecycling@cornwall.gov.uk

Safer-St-Austell-leaflet-August-2017.pdf
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Active Plus

October 9th, 2017 by

The East Cornwall CPO has attended the Active Plus Communities Project with Police Training Staff and local police community support officers (PCSO) delivering to interactive information sessions to groups of older people in St Blazey, Launceston, Bodmin, Newquay, Liskeard and St Austell delivering Crime Prevention, Cold Caller and Scams awareness. These sessions have reached more than 55 people, all aged over 50, who have been brought together through the Big Lottery funded Active Plus Communities Project. In addition to becoming more informed, many participants have made practical changes to improve their home security.  One 93 year-old was helped to make those changes by the Poppy Calls Handy Man service.  The aim of Active Plus Communities is to reduce loneliness and isolation amongst older people through greater connections and involvement in their communities. Helping them to feel informed and safe is a key part of achieving those aims.  The Active Plus Communities Team also works with the Fire and Rescue Service and delivers First Aid awareness and CPR as part of the activities for the groups.

Quotes from Participants:

‘I now feel safer in my own home after the presentation’

‘Crime Prevention-Excellent day’

‘Very informative and thoroughly enjoyed’

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Quit smoking rates in Cornwall highest ever

October 1st, 2017 by

New Stoptober campaign urges even more to take the plunge

Fewer people in Cornwall are smoking with new data published today by the University College of London (UCL) showing a drop of almost 7% in smoking prevalence.

Ten years ago 21% of people in Cornwall smoked, but this has now fallen to 15.7%. In the last year alone, smoking prevalence fell by 2.5% and whilst still slightly higher than the national average, it has fallen by a greater percentage. In Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly approximately 80,000 people are smokers.

The report has been released as Cornwall Council and Public Health England launch the Stoptober quit smoking campaign which aims to encourage even more people to quit.

Robert West, Professor of Health Psychology and Director of Tobacco Studies at University College London, said:

“Quitting success rates this year are soaring. The advances and wider choice in effective quitting options, and stronger anti-smoking culture are fuelling this acceleration.

“Thinking about giving up may be daunting, but all the evidence shows there has never been an easier to time to stop. Quitting needn’t be the painful journey it used to be and the support you’ll get from Stoptober will increase your chances of succeeding.

“And for the first time, any smoker – no matter their sex, age, where they live, their background or type of job they do – has virtually the same chance of quitting successfully as the next person.”

The Stoptober quit smoking challenge has inspired over one and a half million quit attempts across England since 2012. The campaign is based on research that if you stop smoking for 28 days you are five times more likely to stop for good.

With Stoptober now in its sixth year, the UCL report reinforces that there has never been a better time to quit with:

  • better and more quitting aid options, with e-cigarettes now the most popular
  • more restrictions on smoking
  • the introduction of plain tobacco packaging
  • a stronger anti-smoking culture in England
  • supportive stop smoking campaigns such as Stoptober.

To support more people to quit, Cornwall Stop Smoking Service is offering anyone wishing to use vaping as a method of quitting support from a stop smoking adviser. Although the service cannot provide e-cigarettes, they can provide additional support to help people change their behaviours and habits.

Last year over half (53%) of all those taking part in the Stoptober campaign opted to use e-cigarettes as a quitting aid. This year the campaign will feature e-cigarettes in the TV ad and will do more to encourage and support smokers who are keen to try e-cigarettes to help them stop smoking.

Miriam Brenton, Stop Smoking team lead for Cornwall’s Health Promotion Service said: “With more and more people choosing vaping as a means to quitting we are really excited to extend our service to meet their needs by offering behavioural support alongside their use. We know that people are up to four times more likely to successfully quit with specialist help and support from services like ours. We want our service to be accessible for everyone wishing to make the change to improve their health.”

Russ Moody, Tobacco Control lead for PHE South West said:

“E-cigarettes are now the most popular way to quit in the country with half of all those taking part in Stoptober last year using an e-cigarette. The evidence is clear – vaping is at least 95% less harmful than smoking – a fraction of the risk. So if you’ve struggled with quitting before, an e-cigarette may be the best option for you.

“Don’t be put off if you’ve already made several attempts. Join up with Stoptober and benefit from free support direct to your phone, laptop or tablet via the Stoptober app, a daily email giving support or Facebook Message, free face-to-face support plus a raft of advice and information on the website. Search ‘Stoptober’ online and join the thousands of others who go smokefree once and for all this year.”

The Stoptober campaign starts on 1 October. Search ‘Stoptober’ online for all the support you need to quit.

 

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The Acorn Service 2017

October 1st, 2017 by

Saturday 23 September 2017 saw the fourth consecutive service with this year being the third to be held at Truro Cathedral. The service seeks to celebrate the lives of those who have died from substance misuse and those who live with it.

Last year in Cornwall there were 32 drug related deaths and many more when alcohol and prescription drugs are considered. The stigma often attached to drug-related deaths can leave those mourning feeling different from other mourners, with the special Acorn service providing a way to bring people together.

The service is organised in partnership between Cornwall Council, Drug and Alcohol Action Team (DAAT), Boscence Farm Community Ltd, Addaction and Truro Cathedral.

The service included personal reflections, music and readings from service users and drug treatment workers, a tailored service of remembrance and a tree of remembrance where messages were written on paper shaped oak leaves. We now have 4 years worth of oak leaves that have been personalised. The cruel irony here is that at this time of year the oak loses its’ leaves- the tree in our service always gains leaves.

The tree of remembrance from 2015- it now bears many more leaves representing lives lost

This years’ service was well attended and the emotion of the occasion was very much in evidence with one mother saying ‘I haven’t been able to cry like this since my 20 year old daughter died earlier this year’.

This brave mother came to the service after hearing another mother speaking on Radio Cornwall the previous day when Laurence Reed held his live talk show. Laurence has been very supportive of this service over the last 4 years and Sid Willett from Cornwall DAAT was able to go into the studio with Kirsty to speak about the loss of her daughter Victoria aged just 21 when she died last year.

Victoria died aged just 21

Victoria is just one example of a life tragically cut short when she naively combined internet sourced drugs with GP prescribed medicines. Both of these mothers want to help others and raise awareness of the complexities of drug related deaths.

Gary Hales used heroin for six years and is now celebrating his 5th-year of not using Heroin. In that 5 years he’s completed a diploma and a degree as well as working with Addaction as a volunteer and now a full employee. Gary gave a reading during the service.

He said “I’ve made some bad decisions in my life however, I am very fortunate to be in a position where I can share my experiences. My curiosity and naivety to drugs is what started my addiction – two deadly behaviours when combined and there are drugs around.

“I lost six years of my life to a heroin addiction. I am the lucky one as others I’ve witnessed lost their lives. I spent years chasing the dragon when I could have been chasing my dreams and aspirations. Eventually, I became a lost soul and on many occasions wished I would never wake up however, chasing death, led me to life.

Sid Willett, Drug Related Death Prevention Co-ordinator, Cornwall Drug and Alcohol Action Team (DAAT) said “I am proud to work in Cornwall with so many people that care about these issues and our communication between Police, drug treatment, pharmacy, HM Coroner and her staff, RCHT, SWAST and many others is second to none. The DAAT now being part of Community Safety within Cornwall Council allows us an even wider platform to prevent future deaths.

This is a different approach to what is usually expected, as we seek to remember and to raise awareness at the same time. Our work is all about partnership working often with marginalised groups. Although sadly too late for some, the Acorn service seeks to remember, reflect and use the legacy of those who have died to change processes or whatever needs to be done to prevent future deaths.”

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Recent raid prompts warning on illegal tobacco sale

September 8th, 2017 by

More than 13,000 illegal cigarettes and 1,500 packets of illegal tobacco have been seized over the past 12 months in Cornwall, prompting authorities to issue a warning to the community that illegal trade will not be tolerated.

The latest warning follows a joint raid between the Council and police in North Country, near Illogan last month which saw another 1,000 pouches of hand rolling tobacco and a large sum of cash seized.

Cornwall Council’s Trading Standards said the products were either counterfeit, posing a public health risk as people don’t know what’s inside, or they had not had tax paid on them, robbing the public purse of thousands of pounds in tax.

Trading Standards has received an increasing number of calls and reports from the public over the last year, and as a result ten search warrants have been executed and seven people prosecuted through the criminal courts.

Cllr Sue James, Cabinet Member for Public Protection said: cigarettes 2

“Illegal tobacco trade harms everyone. All tobacco is harmful, but when it is cheap and easy to get hold of, it makes it harder for people to quit and more accessible to children and young people.

“The loss of tax revenue reduces money available for local schools and health care.

“The illegal tobacco trade also has strong links to crime including drug dealing.

“Our message is clear – selling illegal tobacco is a crime which can carry fines, community orders or prison. The number of reports we are seeing shows more people have had enough and are providing us with information to stop local criminals selling and trading tobacco. Whether you are a shopkeeper or an individual, chances are you will be reported. Our crackdown will continue.”

Anyone with information about the sale of illegal tobacco or alcohol can make a report in confidence by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or by emailing report-it@cornwall.gov.uk

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Prison sentence for car sales fraudster

September 8th, 2017 by

A two year investigation by Cornwall Council Trading Standards finished last week when second-hand car dealer, Mark Tomkins, pleaded guilty to six charges at Bodmin Magistrates Court on 3 August.

car-salesThe Court heard that Tomkins (40) of Chard in Somerset had been using his girlfriend’s address in Camelford and a variety of telephone phone numbers to advertise cars for sale via the Autotrader and Gumtree websites. Over a two year period he sold 25 cars to people on low incomes or first time buyers. But the cars were often unsafe and in need of serious repairs so Tomkins posed as a private seller or used false names to avoid his liabilities and to evade consumer complaints.

Tomkins admitted all charges under Consumer Protection Regulations and the Fraud Act. He offered no excuse but said “I feel ashamed, when it’s all read out like that.”

He was told by the Court: “Your trading put buyers safety at risk. It was clearly fraudulent and undermined public confidence in other motor traders.”

Tompkins was sentenced to 12 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months and ordered to complete 100 hours of community service, to pay £720 in compensation and £1,000 towards the cost of the investigation.

Cllr Sue James, Cornwall Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Protection welcomed the verdict. “This was the result of a lengthy investigation by the Council’s Trading Standards team. The offences here reflected a deliberate attempt to defraud members of the public, including those who could least afford to lose money. The use of false names and a variety of telephone numbers and e-mail addresses demonstrates the calculated and scheming nature of the crime.

“The Court has recognised the potential harm done to the motor trade in Cornwall, and this sends a clear warning to people considering illegal activity that they will be caught.

“More and more motor dealers across the county are joining the Trading Standards approval scheme, ‘Buy with Confidence’ to help them stand out as business who can be trusted. A case like this demonstrates the value of the scheme in giving buyer’s confidence in who they buy from.”

The Buy with Confidence Scheme provides people in Cornwall with a list of local businesses which have given their commitment to trading fairly. Every business listed has undergone a series of detailed checks by Trading Standards officers before being approved as a member of the scheme to ensure that they operate in a legal, honest and fair way. You can find more information on the Buy with Confidence Scheme page which includes a list of businesses registered under the scheme.

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Police Volunteer plays key role in public safety

September 8th, 2017 by

A Chief Constable’s Public Service Award is to be given to a police volunteer who has played a key role in making Liskeard’s roads safer.

Mick ChorltonMick Chorlton has volunteered with Devon and Cornwall Police since 2009 originally founding the Community Speed Watch (CSW) team in Liskeard where he is now the lead volunteer. The dedication that Mick has shown to his role has led the team to becoming one of the most proactive CSW groups in the force area. The data gathered from these watches reveals the impact that CSW has with a significant reduction of traffic speed in and around the Liskeard area. Mick is an active ambassador for this role and volunteers at community groups and local events, including the Royal Cornwall Show, promoting CSW and helping to develop community relations and understanding of the CSW programme, which in turn has built trust towards the police service.

Since 2011 Mick has also volunteered with the Liskeard Police Cadets becoming one of the senior and valuable volunteer leaders. As a former Naval Commander, Mick has taken on the responsibility of teaching cadets drill and the importance in the standards of their appearance. He helped to organise and part-fund humanitarian aid trips for the cadets to volunteer in Croatia in partnership with Rotary International. They helped to rebuild an orphanage for severely disabled children who were casualties from the recent war. Mick also helped the cadets with their ‘Cop Car’ project, building and racing an electrically powered kit car as part of a Greenpower initiative. They qualified for the national finals finishing as the highest placed police project.

Mick also helped set up and run the youth club in St Cleer which led to a dramatic reduction in anti-social behaviour. He also volunteers his time litter picker and is in regular attendance at the Liskeard Have Your Say Panel, a community meeting where police, partner agencies and council members meet to discuss and problem-solve local issues.

To arrange an interview with Mr Chorlton please contact PC Garth Hatt, Neighbourhood Beat Manager for Liskeard South on 01579 325454.

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Safer Cornwall are a working partnership involving: