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Pioneering Peer Mentors are highly commended at World Class Policing Awards

Highly commended

Steve White, Acting PCVC, Community Peer Mentor Coordinators and Volunteers.

Durham Police, Crime & Victims' Commissioner and Durham Police’s work in helping the most vulnerable people in their communities has been rewarded with ‘highly commended’ recognition in the inaugral World Class Policing Awards, last night.

The project beat off competition from 54 finalists, drawn from more than 100 outstanding entries from across the globe, to win a highly commended prize at the new event recognising outstanding police work from across the world.

Jim Cunningham, Peer Mentor Co-ordinator said: "Receiving this award is a true reflection of all the outstanding work to support vulnerable and isolated people, by our dedicated and hardworking team, along with our amazing and talented volunteers."

The unique project has reduced demand on front line policing while empowering vulnerable and isolated people affected by mental health issues, victims of crime, neighbourly disputes, and anti-social behaviour to not feel let down by society and professional frontline services.

 Steve White, Acting Police Crime and Victims Commissioner said: “A huge congratulations to the Community Peer Mentor team for being highly commended at the first World Class Policing Awards.  This fantastic scheme helps to turn the lives of clients around and improve their life chances, as well as helping to reduce demand on our services.”The project aims to reduce the pressure on frontline emergency services, and local councils by engaging with those who make frequent calls to these services and reducing the severity and frequency of the calls.


The Peer Mentors Scheme saw 450 people supported by mentors with life experience, reducing mental health calls to the police and improving their mental and physical wellbeing. More than 39,000 police staff hours have been saved, resulting in huge savings for the force while there’s been a reduction in poor behaviour in communities in the county.

Judges commented that this programme “demonstrates so many of the characteristics of World Class Policing.”

A spokesman from the Awards added: “It is high impact both in terms of the public and victims, it involves some of the most marginalised people themselves in the delivery of a service that changes lives, it makes a well-argued case for having an impact on staff wellbeing and it is genuinely creative and innovative in its design.”

“This is an excellent example of a progressive approach to trying to get offenders and potential offenders out of a life of crime by taking time to deal with the issues they are facing, and thereby increasing the confidence in local police and a feeling of safety in the local community.”

The Awards specifically recognise and celebrate the collaborative nature of policing - whether that is a brilliant investigation, a business change project or a multi-agency partnership - in delivering the most effective and efficient way to protect our communities and keep them safe.

More information about the awards can be found at www.worldclasspolicing.com




Posted on Friday 15th November 2019
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