Top teamwork at British Transport Police lands award for neighbourhood policing in Kings Cross
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A community initiative set up to reduce anti social behaviour and engage with homeless people at Camden has been recognised with a Neighbourhood Policing Award.
Engaging with homeless people and encouraging them into support services was the aim of Op Mammoth set up by the neighbourhood policing team at Kings Cross in June last year.
Working throughout lockdown after consultation with partners, the team set up the scheme to safeguard the street population following feedback from passengers and rail partners.
The team, made up of officers, Police Community Support Officers and Special Constables, set about ensuring appropriate referrals were in place and identifying individuals who were high risk.
Joint patrols with Camden Community Presence officers, Network Rail and Routes off the Street (RTS) staff, mean active engagement with members of the street population, conducting street counts and encouraging them to take support.
In an average week there are 80 officer hours of dedicated and exclusive patrols; 100 interactions with the street population; 10 referrals for support; 30 intelligence reports submitted; 20 warnings issued for ASB and five arrests.
Far from being a knee jerk reaction to the issue of homelessness, the team regularly meet with other agencies including The Mental Health Trust to discuss how best to support individuals who have been identified as rough sleeping and begging, as well as looking at enforcement action for those who continue to engage in anti social behaviour.
By adopting a ‘Zero Tolerance’ approach to the top five offenders and enforcing the controlled drinking zone along with the issuing of Dispersal Orders, WIPS, Community Protection Warnings and Community Protection Notices are all used as tools to combat anti social behaviour.
So far the team has obtained CBOs against six prolific offenders and there are 16 active Community Protection Notices which have been jointly issued by BTP/Met/Camden Council.
Supt David Rams said: “The work of the NPT at Kings Cross reflects the whole ethos of community policing: solving the issues that matter most by working with our partners on the railway and in the community.
“Thanks to their innovative approach the team have been able to put in place methods that genuinely help the most vulnerable.
“Not only does the work benefit those living on the street but also improves the confidence of passengers and reduces fear of crime on the railway.”