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Commissioner welcomes north Devon MP's question

Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez’ support for communities as they recover from Covid lockdown has received more praise in Westminster.

Selaine Saxby MP in the House of Commons on Monday

North Devon MP Selaine Saxby used yesterday’s Home Office debate to highlight half a million pounds of additional funding the commissioner has provided to help deal with post lockdown antisocial behaviour.

Ms Saxby asked Home Secretary Priti Patel to join her in welcoming the £500,000 commitment made by Commissioner Hernandez to provide extra support to 20 tourism hotspots.

She asked: “Will my right hon. friend join me in welcoming the investment made just last week by the Devon and Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner, Alison Hernandez, ….. to help to prevent alcohol-related antisocial behaviour following the lifting of lockdown?

“Will she commit to look at how such additional Covid-related costs can be supported by the Government?”

The Home Secretary responded: “She is right to raise the additional costs of Covid—in fact, my hon. friend the Policing Minister has already touched on the fact that we are in discussions with the Treasury. It is inevitable that extra costs have arisen, whether for PPE or the additional hours that police officers have been given. That work is ongoing…..”

The extra funding is being used by police and partners to prevent alcohol related antisocial behaviour following the lifting of lockdown.

The funding will be available for four specific areas of expenditure:

  • Deployment of street marshals in busy public spaces at key hours;
  • Additional CCTV monitoring hours or deployment of additional mobile CCTV systems;
  • Provision of temporary toilet facilities;
  • Help for street pastor schemes or other schemes by volunteers or licensees to help promote safe and responsible drinking.

“Selaine’s question keeps up the momentum and ensures that the summer policing challenge faced in Devon and Cornwall remains on the agenda,” said Commissioner Hernandez.

“As the summer holidays get into full swing in coming weeks, we look forward to welcoming many people to our area for their vacation.

“For many, who may normally spend this time overseas, it may be their first visit here and we want them to have a fantastic experience.

“In a normal year Devon and Cornwall experiences the highest level of domestic visitors in terms of overnight stays and that brings its own challenges for the police.

“But during these unprecedented times, and as we all try to follow the guidelines which help us to recover from the effects of COVID 19 those challenges will be greater and brought into sharp focus.

“It is really important for these challenges to be prominent in the minds of Government ministers in London.

“We are already look forwarding to inviting policing minister Kit Malthouse and MPs to our peninsula in the summer so they can see first-hand the challenges we face.”

The 20 areas receiving extra funding are: Exmouth seafront and Orcombe Point, Exeter Quay, Exeter Cathedral, Bideford Quay, Woolacombe Beach, Croyde Bay, Torquay seafronts, Paignton seafronts, Newton Abbot, Teignmouth waterfront, Brixham Waterfront and Harbour, Towan Beach and waterfront (Newquay), Fistral Beach (Newquay), St Ives Waterfront, Lemon Quay (Truro), Perran Sands (Perranporth), Penzance waterfront, Bude waterfront, Plymouth Hoe and Plymouth Barbican.