criminal justice
health & social care
local government
primary & secondary education
voluntary sector

Tackling Crime Through Public Health and Multi-Agency Approaches

criminal justice

health & social care

local government

primary & secondary education

voluntary sector

08:45 - 16:00

Tuesday 10 December 2019

America Square Conference Centre, Central London

This Forum will provide an opportunity to explore how ‘public health’ approaches can play a leading role in violent crime reduction across the country. Attendees will hear how, through a new binding legal duty, police, local government, NHS trusts, schools and voluntary organisations must all now act together to prevent people engaging in crime. Moreover, delegates will be able to hear from policymakers supporting this multi-agency, ‘public health’ approach, as well as successful best practice case studies from a range of sectors. 


This Forum is specially designed for Police, Local Authorities, the Healthcare Sector, Schools and the Voluntary Sector. Typical job titles will include:

  • Chief Inspectors
  • Superintendents
  • Community Safety Manager
  • Service Directors
  • Chief Constables
  • Heads of Criminal Justice
  • Community Health and Wellbeing Officers
  • Headteachers
  • Assistant Headteachers
  • Safer Schools Officers
  • Police Community Support Officers
  • Directors of Safeguarding
  • Youth Workers
  • Directors of Community Services
  • Clinical Leads for Criminal Justice
  • Neighbourhood Services Officers
  • Youth Justice Officers
  • Police and Crime Commissioners
  • Social Workers

This Forum is also open to the wider public sector to encourage networking and debate.

Key Speakers Confirmed:
  • Lynne Abrams, Head of Serious Violence Priority Projects, The Home Office
  • Dr Éamonn O’Moore, National Lead – Health and Justice, Public Health England and Helen Christmas, Public Health Fellow, Public Health England
  • Jonathan Baggeley, Chief Executive, PSHE Association
  • Alastair Muir – Chief Inspector – Scottish Violence Reduction Unit, Police Scotland
  • Lib Peck, Former Leader, Lambeth Council and Director, London Violence Reduction Unit
  • Rachel De Kam, Manager, West Midlands Violence Prevention Alliance
  • Professor Maggie Rae, Faculty of Public Health and Head of School and Public Health Transformation, Health Education England
  • Maurice Mason, Civil Contingencies & Community Safety Management Lead, Hackney Council
View the agenda and additional speakers


Registration, Refreshments and Networking


Chair's Welcome Address

Andreea Anastasiu, Senior Policy Officer – Government Outcomes Lab, Blavatnik School of Government (University of Oxford) (CONFIRMED)

Part 1 – Legislating For a Multi-Agency, Public Health Approach to Crime


Morning Keynote: Implementing a ‘Public Health Legal Duty’ For All Sectors to Tackle the Causes of Crime

  • Discussing a new ‘public health legal duty’ to prevent violent crime for police, local council, NHS trusts, education representatives and youth offending services
  • Distributing the £200 million Youth Endowment Fund, which will be delivered over ten years to stop children being pulled into criminal activities
  • Delivering the £100 million Serious Violence Fund to support 18 regions in creating Violence Reduction Units (VRUs)
  • Ensuring that each sector is sharing data and intelligence as part of a multi-agency approach to tackling the underlying causes of crime
  • Updating the Crime and Disorder Act to make serious violence a clear priority for Community Safety Partnerships and to prevent young people being drawn into violence and crime
  • Providing guidance to support the legal duty, covering examples of multi-agency working and how each different sector can contribute to early intervention and crime prevention

Lynne Abrams, Head of Serious Violence Priority Projects, The Home Office (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Supporting a Multi-Agency “Proactive, Prevention and Partnership” Approach

  • Releasing the Public Health Approaches in Policing in early 2019 alongside the College of Policing as part of the Policing, Health and Social Care Consensus, a collaborative, cross-sector crime prevention system
  • Supporting the Policing Vision 2025 with a public health approach to crime reduction, focusing on prevention, partnership, data sharing and evidence-based practice
  • Ensuring police forces are working with cross-sector partners to focus on proactive prevention, which shows that prevention is better than cure
  • Showing that tackling the social determinants of crime, such as poor health, low income and lack of viable opportunities requires input not only from policing, but from local government, NHS Trusts, schools and voluntary organisations
  • Placing epidemiology, the study of the determinants of events in a given population, at the heart of a data-led approach to crime reduction by identifying patterns, risks and factors which point to the likelihood of engaging in violence

Dr Éamonn O’Moore, National Lead – Health and Justice, Public Health England and Helen Christmas, Public Health Fellow, Public Health England (CONFIRMED)


Keynote: Tackling Violent Crime Through the School Curriculum and Classroom

  • Working with The Home Office and National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC) to improve police involvement in school education and integrate the public health approach into the school curriculum
  • Creating, alongside The Home Office, an addition to the PSHE curriculum which centres on knife crime and violent crime as a whole
  • Equipping teachers with the materials to communicate with pupils aged 11-16 about the realities of violent crime, the consequences and the myths surrounding knife crime
  • Developing the curriculum additions based on extensive feedback from teachers and welcoming further feedback into how schools can continue to tackle youth crime through lessons

Jonathan Baggeley, Chief Executive, PSHE Association (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Networking and Refreshments

Part 2 – Violence Reduction Units (VRUs): Engaging Police, NHS, Local Government, Schools and Voluntary Organisations


Case Study: Implementing the Leading Public Health Approach Towards Violent Crime Prevention and Reduction

  • Implementing the first and leading public health approach towards preventing crime, creating a police-led Violence Reduction Unit with partners in NHS, education, local government and voluntary organisations
  • Working with schools through the Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) programme, the largest anti-violence schools initiative which is working daily with schools across over 20 local authority areas
  • Supporting healthcare partners, such as through Medics Against Violence which is encouraging wounded victims to co-operate with police and Navigator, a hospital programme to support crime-related patients reform their lives
  • Targeting crime across all contexts, which has halved the number of knife crimes and reduced homicides to their lowest level since 1976
  • Being recognised as the world’s leading VRU by becoming the only police member of the World Health Organisation’s Violence Prevention Alliance

Alastair Muir – Chief Inspector – Scottish Violence Reduction Unit, Police Scotland (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Tackling the Crisis of Violent Crime in London Through the Public Health Approach

  • Providing an update on the early work of the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) in London, established in September 2018, which is employing a public health approach to overturn rising violent crime in London
  • Prioritising the sharing of information to spot the signs and indicators of potential criminal behaviour by encouraging community engagement, views from NHS Trusts, local government input and school involvement
  • Focusing on commonalities within defined populations, such as health conditions or demographic characteristics, which point towards potential criminal activity
  • Utilising data and intelligence sharing to analyse and distribute differences between groups, schools and familial background which could increase the risk of criminal action
  • Tackling poverty and crime side by side, given early findings by the VRU that 75% of London boroughs with the highest levels of violent crime are part of the 10 most deprived boroughs

Lib Peck, Former Leader, Lambeth Council and Director, London Violence Reduction Unit (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Identifying ‘Risk Factors’ and ‘Protective Factors’ to Maximise the Impact of Crime Prevention Strategies

  • Identifying and acting on the basis of what puts people at risk of being either victims or perpetrators through a partnership between Public Health England and West Midlands Police, funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner for the West Midlands
  • Finding ‘risk factors’, which put people at risk of committing crime, and ‘protective factors’, which can minimise these risks, from across societal, community, relationship and individual contexts
  • Sharing these factors across local governments, NHS Trusts, CCGs, schools and community organisations to ensure all are aware of them and are acting to promote protective factors
  • Targeting youth support across hospitals, in particular looking out for and responding to Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), which can become a serious ‘risk factor’ if ignored
  • Being recognised as a leading public health approach with £3.4 million of funding from The Home Office to scale WMVPA to a Violence Reduction Unit later this year

Rachel De Kam, Manager, West Midlands Violence Prevention Alliance (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Lunch and Networking

Part 3 – Effective Action on the Ground: Best Practice at the Local Level


Afternoon Keynote: Preventing Violence by Promoting Health

  • Protecting people’s mental and physical health and wellbeing as a central component of violence reduction strategies, given the positive relationship between poor health and likelihood to commit violent crime
  • Outlining the implications of a legal duty for all NHS Trusts to support crime prevention within their region, including the required adjustments and cross-sector outreach required
  • Pushing local areas to adopt information sharing approaches, particularly where drugs and alcohol are part of the cause of violence
  • Standardising approaches to data collection and dissemination across regions so that effective comparisons and common methods can be used
  • Ensuring public health professionals take an active leadership role in the prevention of violence within their local areas, including in the measurement and surveillance of violent crime

Professor Maggie Rae, Faculty of Public Health and Head of School and Public Health Transformation, Health Education England (CONFIRMED)


Keynote: Providing an Update on the Youth Endowment Fund

  • Implementing The Home Office’s £200 million Youth Endowment Fund, which will be funding projects aimed at early intervention and community partnerships to tackle crime, focusing on children aged 10-14
  • Opening the first round of funding for the Youth Endowment Fund, with grants for programmes available up to £200,000 each
  • Welcoming funding bids from charities, businesses, schools, local authorities, NHS Trusts and police forces, including cross-sector bids
  • Outlining the key tenets of effective early intervention, why it matters to preventing crime and how each sector has an equally important role to play

Donna Molloy, Early Intervention Foundation (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Effectively Responding to an Increase in Violence Via a Council-Led Public Health Strategy

  • Establishing one of the first council-led public health crime strategies in 2018, in response to rising violent crime within the region
  • Creating an ‘Integrated Gangs Unit’ between the council, police and other local partners to drive people away from gang involvement by providing tailored support, such as housing, education and work assistance
  • Improving health and professional outcomes for young black men through the Young Black Men programme, including access to improved educational outcomes which lead young men away from violence
  • Developing a safeguarding system, through the Children & Families Service (CFS), to address risk of crime beyond familial contexts given the role of peer groups in crime
  • Launching the Young Hackney Service, which is offering prevention services to young people most at risk of falling out of education in an aim to reduce the impact of exclusions

Maurice Mason, Civil Contingencies & Community Safety Management Lead, Hackney Council (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Networking and Refreshments


Case Study: Taking Early Action to Mitigate the Crime Impacts of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

  • Intervening early by implementing a ‘trauma-informed’ approach to overcome the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and build resilient young people less at risk of entering into criminal activities
  • Working to create a range of social projects, health and wellbeing initiatives and tailored support for young people who have experienced ACEs, given they are 8.8 times more likely to end up in prison
  • Acting countywide and in a multi-agency manner across Gloucestershire Constabulary, County Council, CCG, Cheltenham Borough Homes, Gloucester City Homes and throughout the voluntary sector
  • Launching a pilot scheme for delivering Gloucestershire’s ACEs toolkit, which over 30 organisations, community groups and public bodies are using to embed this approach into organisational activity and safeguarding policies

Julian Moss, Assistant Chief Constable, Gloucestershire Constabulary (CONFIRMED)

Sarah Scott, Director of Public Health, Gloucestershire County Council (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: ‘The Cardiff Model’ - Transferring Data from Hospitals to Police and Local Authorities to Inform Violence Prevention Strategies

  • Sharing extensive hospital data with local authorities and the police in order to ensure prevention is based not only on police intelligence, but also on health data
  • Developing this unique approach given that two-thirds of violence that leads to hospital treatment is completely unknown to police
  • Detailing data collection carefully within emergency departments, including precise location, time and nature of violence
  • Translating this data into violence prevention strategies, targeting specific locations and types of violence, led by a Violence Prevention Board
  • Reducing serious violence incidents by 42% and hospital admissions due to violence by 35% through this model

Professor Jonathan Shepherd CBE, Member, Cardiff Community Safety Partnership and Chair, Violence Research Group (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Building Voluntary-NHS Partnerships by Embedding Youth Services in Hospitals

  • Revolutionising support, through the Youth Violence Intervention Programme, to 11-25 year olds who are in hospital due to serious violence by integrating support workers into the hospital
  • Embedding these youth workers within emergency departments alongside clinical staff to intervene at moments of vulnerability, disrupting the cycle of violence that can lead to retaliation and readmittance
  • Aiding young people in movements away from violence, improving engagement with local communities and then supporting the pursuit of positive life change
  • Expanding these services in hospitals across London and now to Nottingham and Birmingham, with the view to support hospitals further across the country

Winner of the Children and Youth Category at The Charity Awards 2018

John Poyton, CEO, Redthread and Dr Niamh Ni Longain, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Homerton University Hospital (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Providing Knife Crime Workshops to Primary and Secondary Schools to Tackle Crime Through Education

  • Working alongside primary and secondary schools to support preventative programmes that inform pupils about the impact of carrying knifes through a unique learning environment
  • Directly advising and supporting teachers in their efforts to prevent children from carrying knives, given that 1 in every 7 children knows a friend who carries a knife
  • Running 6-week “Best You” plans, tailor made support programmes for young people at risk of violent crime uptake
  • Setting up Pupil Referral Units, environments where young people who have experienced violence or trauma can discuss their issues with specialists
  • Reaching over 16,000 children, with 9% of young people saying before the engagement that they would consider carrying a knife, reduced to just 1.8% afterwards

Patrick Green, CEO, The Ben Kinsella Trust (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Chair's Summary and Close

*programme subject to change


80% of repeat violent crime offenders receive their very first sanction during secondary school and a single repeat offender costs their local region almost £2.5 million. In the year ending March 2019, 22,041 weapon offences were dealt with in the UK, the highest number for nearly a decade. With over 2.5 million violent incidents per year, the NHS faces a cost of £2.9 billion a year from the 300,000 emergency department attendances. These damning statistics show that tackling violent crime cannot be limited to police alone. It requires close collaboration between sectors to tackle the root causes of crime through preventative multi-agency action, treating crime as a ‘public health’ issue.

NHS trusts, local councils, schools, police and community organisations will now all be accountable for preventing violent crime. The new ‘Public Health Legal Duty’, announced by The Home Office in July 2019, will legally require police, local councils, NHS trusts, schools and youth services to work together to share data and knowledge and work in tandem to tackle the root cause of violence and crime. Further, amendments to the Crime and Disorder Act to include a public health duty for all sectors, in addition to upcoming new guidance, will ensure Community Safety Partnerships and local partners are legislatively required to commit to more targeted interventions to prevent crime.

In addition to this legal requirement, The Home Office announced in October 2018 a £200 million Youth Endowment Fund available for local partners to gain access to in order to prevent young people entering a life of crime. Additionally, The Home Office has worked in partnership with the PSHE Association to build additional school curriculum input on knife crime, to ensure schools are doing more as part of this public health approach.

Building on the fantastic work of Police Scotland to almost eradicate knife crime through a ‘public health approach’, there is a real chance to replicate this throughout the UK. With new binding legislation for all sectors, the importance of getting this cross-sector, preventative approach right is paramount to protecting UK citizens from violent crime. All sectors must come together to understand their duties, responsibilities and build successful local arrangements for tackling crime as a ‘public health’ issue.

You May Also Like

  • Effectively Supporting Victims of Crime

    27 November 201908:45 - 16:00

    Congress Centre, Central London