Picture of residents and police at area sign

Safer Sunderland Partnership

Who is involved in the Safer Sunderland Partnership?

The local Community Safety Partnership in Sunderland is called the Safer Sunderland Partnership.

The Safer Sunderland Partnership brings together public, private, community and voluntary sector organisations to deliver the Safer Sunderland Strategy. 

There are 6 responsible authorities, under sections 5 and 6 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, who have a statutory duty to work in partnership to improve community safety and in Sunderland, these are:

  • Sunderland City Council
  • Northumbria Police
  • Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)
  • Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service
  • National Probation Service
  • Northumbria Community Rehabilitation Company

There is also a wide range of other agencies involved in supporting the work of the Partnership, such as the Youth Offending Service; Gentoo and other registered social landlords; the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner; local NHS Trusts; and a range of commissioned services and many more.

The Partnership consists of:

  • The Safer Sunderland Strategic Board – made up of the 6 responsible authorities
  • Area Delivery through its Local Multi-Agency Problem Solving (LMAPS) Groups
  • Themed Delivery through delivery networks (e.g. the Sunderland Domestic Violence Partnership) or time-limited task and finish groups
  • Partnership Support from the Council’s Policy, Partnerships and Communications service

What does the Safer Sunderland Partnership do?

The 6 responsible authorities have a legal duty to work in partnership to carry out an annual strategic assessment and implement a partnership plan to tackle crime, disorder, substance misuse, anti-social behaviour (including behaviour adversely affecting the environment) and re-offending.

The Partnership’s vision is to make Sunderland a city which is, and feels, even safer and more secure, where people can enjoy life without the concerns of being a victim of crime or being harmed.

The Safer Sunderland Partnership has a statutory duty to develop and implement a ‘partnership plan’. To achieve its vision, the Safer Sunderland Partnership has a 15 year strategy called the Safer Sunderland Strategy 2008-2023.  It gives a longer term focus to the partnership’s activity and is supported by a single partnership delivery plan which is updated annually.

The overall outcome of the Safer Sunderland Strategy is about people being and feeling safe and secure which is supported by a number of other long term outcomes which are:

  • Being free from harm (e.g. from violence, alcohol, drugs, fire etc.)
  • Creating a safe environment
  • Being free from crime, disorder and substance misuse
  • Creating active citizens (e.g. positive behaviour, building on strengths, and tackling risk factors to offending)
  • Creating a supportive family environment (e.g. whole family working)
  • Creating cohesive communities (e.g. which are safeguarded and free from tensions, hate and discrimination)
  • Embedding a problem solving approach
  • Creating an effective partnership

The Safer Sunderland Partnership has an annual delivery plan which sets out the key strategic priorities and priority work areas. The focus is on the added value multi-agency work that will help to achieve the outcomes in the Safer Sunderland Strategy.

The 2 key strategic priorities for 2017-18:

  1. Priority 1: Prevent crime and disorder, re-offending and maintain high levels of feelings of safety
  2. Priority 2: Protect and support our most vulnerable people and places from harm

In 5 key work areas for 2017-18 are:

  1. Substance misuse-related crime and disorder with specific focus on alcohol
  2. Domestic abuse and other forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG)
  3. Citywide and local area problem solving with a focus on LMAPS and responses to crime, community safety and cohesion issues
  4. Safeguarding and feelings of safety as cross-cutting issues with a key focus on newer and emerging threats and harms such as serious organised crime; sexual exploitation; modern day slavery, trafficking; and preventing violent extremism and radicalisation.
  5. Partnership Development and Collaboration  which covers statutory duties and strengthening partnership working

A summary of what was achieved against the delivery plan is produced every year and published as an annual report

Safer Sunderland Annual Reports

Each year, the Safer Sunderland Partnership produces an annual report which sets out the progress it made in achieving what it set out to do in its annual delivery plan.  Previous annual reports can be downloaded here

Safer Sunderland Annual Report 2015-16

Safer Sunderland Annual Report 2016-17

The Safer Sunderland Problem Solving Approach

The Safer Sunderland Partnership delivers activity around:

  • Preventing crime, disorder and substance misuse from happening in the first place.   This is about designing out crime by changing the physical environment of our streets and neighbourhoods including 4G cameras and other technological developments, the presence of capable guardians, improved home security and secured car parks.  This also includes social crime prevention such as education and awareness raising about harm and reducing risks, especially around issues such as drugs, alcohol, and healthy relationships/teen relationship abuse. 
  • Intervening early where people are at risk from these problems.  This is about tackling the early signs of offending behaviour (risk factors) and enhancing the protective factors to reduce the number of young people becoming offenders and to reduce repeat victimisation to focus efforts on vulnerable people and places.  This includes educational work around consent and sexual exploitation; drug and alcohol screening and brief interventions; and routine and selective enquiry about domestic abuse.  It also includes work to prevent problems escalating, such as the domestic abuse response car (Police and WWIN) to increase victims’ engagement with support at an early stage; and the Street Pastor’s work who intervene to help safeguard vulnerable people or to diffuse issues to ensure they don’t lead to more serious disorder or violence.
  • Taking swift enforcement action against those who break the law.  This is about ensuring that when people do commit crime, it is detected and there is a penalty appropriate to both the offender and the offence (backed up by reparation where appropriate).  This is also about appropriate use of powers available to partners and effective policing and criminal justice processes to increase the risk of offenders being caught and to deter potential offenders.  This will include things such as the use of a range of ASB tools and powers, injunctions, and the enforcement of the city’s Licensing Policy which can help reduce alcohol related violence.
  • Providing treatment, or support or rehabilitation to those who have been a victim and to those who need help to break the cycle of offending and substance misuse.  This is about supporting victims to live safely (e.g. outreach work and supported accommodation such as DV refuges) and safety planning for high risk DV victims via the MARAC; as well as managing offenders in such a way (IOM) as to prevent further re-offending and ensuring there is swift and effective treatment for substance misuse.
  • Providing ‘reassurance’ so that people are informed and know what the police, council and partners are doing to keep their area safe.
  • Improving intelligence about community safety and carrying out partnership development activity to ensure the SSP is fit for purpose.