Newlove joins DCLG to develop better neighbourhood plans

28 Apr 11
The government's adviser on safer communities has moved from the Home Office to the Department for Communities and Local Government
By Richard Johnstone

28 April 2011

The government’s adviser on safer communities has moved from the Home Office to the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Baroness Newlove will work with DCLG ministers in raising awareness of how local people, businesses and the police can make their communities safer.

The move follows publication last month of Newlove’s report, Our vision forsafe and active communities, which was based on the experiences of pilots in deprived areas. The report made a series of recommendations on how residents, businesses, government and local agencies could begin ‘a generational shift’ in the approach to tackling neighbourhood crime.

Proposals included a community reward scheme, where information that leads to a conviction is rewarded with funding to spend on community crime prevention work, and asking the police to commit at least 1% of their budget to grassroots groups.

The government has said it will be responding to the report over the summer. However, the DCLG has already endorsed recommendations that tie in with its decentralisation plans and the Localism Bill, such as giving more power to community activists.

Newlove’s role at the DCLG will include continuing to support the seven neighbourhoods she worked with to inform her report. The pilot areas were: Offerton, Stockport; Briar Road Estate, Havering; Park and Twyn Wards, Merthyr Tydfil; Cutsyke, Wakefield; Cheriton and Folkestone East, Shepway; the Parish of St Johns-at-Hackney, Hackney; and Flower Roads Estate, Southampton.

The announcement of Newlove’s move came as she made her maiden speech in the House of Lords yesterday. Newlove was made a peer in July 2010, having campaigned to make communities safer since the death of her husband Garry at the hands of a gang of teenagers in 2007.

She said: ‘I am delighted my move into Communities will increase the pace of delivery of my plans for happier, safer neighbourhoods. I promised everyone who helped me with my report that it would not gather dust, but would be a roadmap for us to work towards our common goals which includes empowering local people to help find the solutions to local problems.’

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said that Newlove would provide ‘invaluable insight and advice from communities’ on the development of localism policies.

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