Leaders in Adur and Worthing are calling on the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner to think again before stripping the areas of more than half of its funding to keep communities safe.
The Adur & Worthing Safer Communities Partnership, which is led by Adur & Worthing Councils, has an excellent track record of working with the public, private and third sector groups to make the area a safer place to live, work and visit.
But, the partnership says it must consider stripping back its pioneering services after Sussex PCC Katy Bourne announced funding cuts of more than £40,000 from the service – the largest amount of any area in the county.
While other areas across Sussex receive only funding from the police to pay for its community safety work, Adur & Worthing has brought in large amounts of money from other sources.
This has led to a number of pioneering projects in supporting some of its most vulnerable people, such as rough sleepers.
Despite overall funding for services across Sussex remaining the same, Ms Bourne has recommended that Adur & Worthing lose 55% of its grant from 2019/20 – reducing the annual sum from £95,160 to £42,872.95.
Leaders locally claim their track record in bringing in external funding has seen it lose out at the expense of others.
In a joint statement, Councillor Dave Simmons and Councillor Val Turner, of the Adur & Worthing Safer Communities Partnership, said: “We received the Police and Crime Commissioner’s funding proposals for 2019/20 just over a week ago and are currently reviewing them before issuing a detailed response.
“On initial viewing, we are disappointed that the Police Commissioner has failed to recognise the innovation of our partnership.
“Unlike many other Community Safety Partnerships across Sussex, Adur & Worthing has been successful in bidding for and generating significant amounts of additional income to deliver bespoke services such as supporting outreach workers for women and the street community. This approach has achieved considerable success and been replicated in other areas of the county.
“Any reduction in funding will impact on front line services that promote safety across our communities.
“We sincerely hope the Police and Crime Commissioner will reconsider this unwelcome approach once we have submitted our formal response on behalf of the communities of Adur and Worthing.”