Liverpool CitySafe Havens scheme 'cuts violent crime'

A scheme that provides "safe havens" in north Liverpool has been credited by police with reducing violent crime in the area by 29%.

The CitySafe Havens project allows people who are feeling vulnerable or intimidated or to go to businesses, shops or community centres for refuge.

The premises were made secure and staff were given child protection training.

Merseyside Police said the 35 havens had significantly reduced crime in nearby areas.

The scheme was founded by Disarm, a partnership between Liverpool City Council, Merseyside Police and education and criminal justice organisations.

Youth inclusion programme Positive Futures North Liverpool asked young people from County, Anfield, Kirkdale and Everton - four wards known for their gang rivalry - to join the scheme.

Best practice

The initiative was also promoted to more than 1,000 young people at school assemblies, educating them about knife crime and the safe places in their local area.

Barry Mizen, the father of murdered London school boy Jimmy Mizen, was also involved and the scheme has now been officially twinned with the anti-knife crime project that he leads in south-east London.

Clare Corran, chief executive of Positive Futures North Liverpool, said: "The significant reduction in crime figures is testament to the effort put in by the young people who were involved.

"Young people have the credibility and respect amongst their peers to make a difference when it comes to educating people about violent crime."

Insp Mark Lawes, in charge of tackling youth violence for Merseyside Police, said: "The CitySafe Havens initiative has had a 'halo' effect, significantly reducing crime within 50m of all our 35 safe places."

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites