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Community Support Officer advising an old woman

South Yorkshire Police and Barnsley Council have teamed up to bring together resources and create a more effective community safety and policing model to help the most vulnerable people within the borough.

Dubbed the Safer Neighbourhood Service, the teams will be officially implemented at the start of April, focusing on addressing community concerns to provide targeted support and intervention.

Police and council staff will work closely with other local organisations, including voluntary and community groups, to better understand the needs of individuals, families and the wider community.

Residents can expect to see an increase in police and council officer presence as dedicated teams work in communities to tackle antisocial behaviour, housing and environmental issues, providing support and reassurance.

The teams will be based at four locations across the district; Royston Police Station, Kendray Police Station (Rae House), Goldthorpe Police Station and Commerce House in the town centre.

The police officers based at Goldthorpe, Kendray and Royston are expected to be in full operation by May. Council staff including victim and witness support, housing officers and community safety officers will be in place from April.

Chief Inspector Jakki Hardy, from Barnsley, said: “Resources have been amalgamated to form four neighbourhood based teams who will be responsible for all communities throughout Barnsley. The teams will provide a more visible presence within the community, offering reassurance and advice to residents.

“This new and improved way of working will bring services together in a bid to reduce duplication and increase resources in a time of financial constraints. This in turn will help us to provide tailored support for those who need it most and prevent problems from escalating as we make sure the most vulnerable people and families within our communities have access to support they need.

“To help as many people, and as early as possible, it is essential that information between organisations is shared so that people only have to tell their story once. The structure of the Safer Neighbourhood Service will allow us to do that. I’m looking forward to the teams being integrated into their designated areas and working towards continuing to help vulnerable people.”

Cllr Jenny Platts, Cabinet Spokesperson for Communities at Barnsley Council, said: “We’re pleased to be joining our resources and putting them back into communities to deliver the best possible service for the people of Barnsley.

“The Safer Neighbourhood Service will work to identify the issues causing most concern in communities and offer the support needed to tackle these. We’ll be working together with South Yorkshire Police to make sure communities are safer, healthier, and stronger through identifying problems early and providing the right response. The teams will also work more broadly with community representatives and groups to make sure we are in touch and responsive to those issues which most affect our neighbourhoods.”

Jakki added: “In the near future, we’re planning to introduce drop-in sessions at locations across each of the areas mentioned above, where you can access the neighbourhood teams and talk to them about any community issues you might have.”

To report instances of anti-social behaviour or crime, please call 101 or 999 in an emergency. You can also report incidents online to South Yorkshire Police via southyorks.police.uk/reportcrime

You can also report antisocial behaviour,environmental crime such as graffiti, fly-tipping, unauthorised encampments and issues with private sector housing by visiting www.barnsley.gov.uk/sns or calling 01226 773555.