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The Get Home Safe campaign was developed to combat rising alcohol related violence levels in South Belfast, Northern Ireland. Alcohol related crime, up 40% over the previous year, was accounting for almost 20% of the total crime in the area. Key issues related to this were an upsurge in South Belfast licensed premises from 274 venues (January 2001) to 311 (January 2002); a rise in numbers of people socializing within the same area; and the above increases not being matched by improved or additional transport. By developing a partnership approach to tackle the problem, combining strategic policing, focused marketing and a public information campaign, the Get Home Safe initiative prioritized action. Those targeted were the most vulnerable to alcohol-related crime and the fear of such crime. Independent evaluation of the campaign showed that the overall assault rate had reduced 19.2%, serious assaults had reduced 33%, and the number of people with serious injuries seeking victim support had reduced 20%. The marketing campaign created successful recall awareness amongst 87% of the target age group, with 40% claiming the campaign changed their behavior positively. Home Office research estimates serious assault costs to be £130,000, in reference to policing, hospital, courts and compensation costs. On this basis a potential savings of £10,000,000 was achieved.
The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) re-launched Problem-Solving in 2001. Consequently, training needs for police and business partners were identified requiring problem-solving training on all 32 Boroughs. Growing organizational demands on the police agency, however, required the re-launch of Problem-Solving to support the reduction of strain on the Service. Analysis revealed that lack of time, money and resources were the main barriers to effective problem solving. The Unit's groundwork resulted in a two-day course divided into four half-day modules, introducing students to the Problem-Solving Process (PSP) and associated skills. Resultantly, over 80 problem-solving initiatives were started involving police and business partners last year. A recent inspection of the past 600 evaluation sheets shows a 97% satisfaction rate, above the Problem Solving Unit (PSU) student satisfaction target of 90%. Over the last financial year, the Unit cost the MPS £140,000 in salary and training equipment. There is no cost implication for any Borough to receive the training, as delivery of the operational policing model is centrally funded.
Londonderry is the largest City in the North West of Northern Ireland, suffering from high and rising levels of 'Offences Against the Person' in recent years. Organized attacks on police officers coupled with a high terrorist threat make day-to-day policing problematic and complex. In the year 2001/2002, assault was the highest volume crime in Foyle DCU, with 42% occurring in the City Centre. An Assault Reduction Strategy was set up to tackle the problem during September 2002. The strategy included a number of problem solving initiatives implemented in conjunction with multi-agency partnerships, combined with targeted police operations involving high visibility policing. The City Centre Initiative agreed to front the project, broadening ownership of the problem and responses. As a result, City Centre assaults have fallen by 43% in a 6-month period (compared to previous year) and have dropped by approximately 183 fewer assaults in the six-month period.