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Sharing with the USA

24 Mar 2022

Staff and young people were delighted to host a meeting with visitors from Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD), Seattle, Kings County USA and staff from the VRN and Revolving Doors.

The meeting was a chance to share how with the support of the Police and crime commission and VRN, our staff work in partnership with a wide range of business, community and public sector agencies to prevent young people getting drawn into a life of crime. The LEAD project operates through a unique coalition of law enforcement agencies, behavioral health providers, prosecutorial partners, and community groups, and is governed by a larger stakeholder body called the Policy Coordinating Group.

Some key elements of the LEAD model and service package include:

  • Services are provided as long as they are needed rather than ending on a fixed date
  • Abstinence is not a requirement to receive services
  • Case management services are harm-reduction oriented, holistic, and based on individual needs
  • Services are low-barrier and provided through street outreach in the community where the individual spends their time
  • Dedicated prosecutorial resources facilitate creative resolutions and coordination with other jurisdictions for outstanding criminal legal issues

There was much synergy between our approaches and the star of the day was Jade a young woman who has been supported by the Leicestershire Cares staff who shared her Life story and journey

Key to me was meeting a staff member who really listened did not give up on me and helped me access support from a range of agencies. I am now combining being a mum with volunteering to support other young women who find themselves caught up in the cycle of domestic abuse and offending , I really believe having people with lived experience giving back makes a huge difference

Jade Leicestershire Cares Participant

All participants felt that key to successful crime prevention was a joined up partnership approach and this needed to seek and build buy in at delivery as well as policy level. People also acknowledged that communities needed to be included in decision making and some might want a “lock them up” approach. However, if people get to see prevention working approaches, they often start to change their minds.

It is really important to ensure you build relationships with and communicate with the community and give them a voice even if you might not agree with what they say

Chief (Ret.) Brendan Cox, Director of Policing Strategies, LEAD National Support Bureau