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Involving Young People in Police training in South Norfolk

pdf Involving Young People in Police Work Case study 2010 04

Involving Young People in Police training in South Norfolk

This case study is based on interviews with the Active Citizenship Co-ordinator(Youth and Community Service, South Norfolk Council) and two members of South Norfolk Youth Action, both aged 16. 


Young people from South Norfolk, mainly from South Norfolk Youth Action (SNYA), led the planning and delivery of part of the training programme for Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs).  SNYA members felt that the PCSOs needed to have ‘real-life' experience of engaging with groups of young people to improve how they deal with young people in the community. They also wanted to learn more about the role of PCSOs, as they had had little or no contact with
them or with the Police.  They worked on a training package with other young people who have had negative interactions with the Police. The aims of the training were to tackle misconceptions
held on both sides.

The training took place in 2005, and was then developed further and carried out in 2008.  The second training day consisted of young people acting out a number of scenarios involving issues such as alcohol, drugs and anti-social behaviour. As well as enabling PCSOs to practise how to respond to the situations presented to them, the day included a reversal of roles between the PSCOs and the young people. It also incorporated a mock arrest for possession of drugs, which involved a young person being taken to a mocked-up police station, interviewed, cautioned, held in a cell and charged.

Footage from the day was used to develop two films. The first, edited and produced by SNYA members, was shown to other young people in schools as part of Local Democracy Week. The objective was to increase understanding of the role of the Police and PCSOs. The second film focused on the mock arrest and is shown in Youth Centres in joint visits by the Active Citizenship Co-ordinator with PCSOs to raise awareness of the consequences of drug possession.

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Wednesday, 28 April 2010
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