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  • Community Safety Reseach 2021

    Created: 17/05/2021

    The Scottish Community Safety Network has published the findings for four research projects they commissioned from MainSt Consulting around Community Safety earlier this year. These projects built on previous research into the emerging landscape and future opportunities for Community Safety. The four projects focused on:

    • Describing the components of a modern and effective Community Safety Partnership (CSP), and the skills required to deliver it.
    • Identifying what makes a safe community mapping how the relationships across the partners can support safer communities.
    • Exploring the use of evidence in community safety and considering what evidence-informed planning might look like in CSPs of the future.
    • Understanding what people with protected characteristics (or under-represented groups more generally) think about community safety in Scotland.

    Key messages from the research:

    • Community safety in Scotland is complex: the breadth and depth of activity means that successful delivery relies on multiple partners and stakeholders working together at local, regional, and national levels
    • Community engagement and empowerment are extremely important for community safety.  The skills and techniques needed to maximise the potential for a more community-led approach need to be further developed. 
    • Data analysis is a constantly developing field which the community safety sector knows well.  Further work is needed to ensure access to data, provide help to support the generation of new data (qualitative and quantiative) and overcome some perceived difficulties about restrictions on data sharing. 
    • The sector is multi-skilled and has been continuously exploring ways to get the best possible outcomes for community safety.  Moving beyond the sharing of ‘best practice’ to the sharing of ‘best thinking’ would help empower a wide range of partners to find the ideas and approaches that are best suited to meeting the challenges faced by their communities. 
    • Community safety professionals are balancing responsive services with proactive strategies designed to make communities safer.  Early intervention and prevention is recognised by the sector as important and there is even greater potential to work with communities to avoid unsafe situations developing or escalating is well understood.
    • Community safety has mostly focused on geographic communities.  The safety needs of communities of interest are often significant and warrant a co-ordinated national approach to ensure that people with particular safety needs are not unduly unsafe. 

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