Agenda item


This report provides the Health and Wellbeing Board with an update on Surrey’s delivery against the Serious Violence Duty.





Lisa Townsend - Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey

Sarah Haywood - Serious Violence Programme Lead, Office of the PCC 


Key points raised in the discussion:


1.    The PCC emphasised the importance of the second recommendation around endorsing the establishment of the Surrey Serious Violence Reduction Partnership, its establishment was necessary to provide the strategic leadership and governance needed. Reminded the Board that whilst the OPCC was a recipient of funding for the Serious Violence Duty, there were several partners which had a statutory responsibility to follow it to ensure all residents are and feel safe. Thanked the Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) for her hard work.

2.    The Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) noted that:

·         She was employed by and worked across the Partnership, with funding via the PCC from the Home Office.

·         The Serious Violence Duty came into force in January 2023 and required those specified authorities to work together to understand and then reduce violence locally. It required a whole system multi-agency approach to understand and address the drivers of serious violence, protecting people from becoming victims and perpetrators of violence.

·         A Strategic Needs Assessment and Surrey Serious Violence Reduction Strategy were being developed, working with partners such as the Surrey Office of Data Analytics (SODA), SCC and Surrey Police.

·         The needs assessment looked at hot spot areas and cohorts: those more at risk were males aged 30 to 34 years old, hot spots were in urban areas, and there was a growth in violence in the young female cohort; and identified gaps and areas requiring in-depth work. Police data would form the core, building around the contextual factors to understand the Surrey picture.

·         Whilst Surrey was safe and there was low crime, serious violence greatly impacted victims and communities; preventing the increase of crime numbers was vital and she would circulate a comprehensive PowerPoint Presentation.

·         Partnership connectivity and networking was crucial, whilst there were several mature workstreams around violence; having that single place through the Partnership to discuss serious violence, understand the risks, collect data and commission responses was vital. The Partnership had oversight of the strategy and the delivery plans, and four overarching priorities had been identified: leadership, evidence-based response, community connections and focused prevention.

·         The funding for this year’s Serious Violence Home Office grant had been assigned and there was an opportunity next year to use the insights from the needs assessment and learning to target support to projects and communities, linking into the towns and the place-based work.

3.    The Chair valued the extended presentation that she had received, she asked what the governance pathway was for the Partnership. The Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) noted that the overarching governance sat with the Board where the Partnership would report to, as referenced in Priority Three with milestones built into those delivery plans. The Chair recognised the cross fertilisation of the Partnership’s work with many of the other activities under the Board’s remit and welcomed regular updates in the Highlight Report.

4.    A Board member highlighted the connections of the work with the Surrey Safeguarding Children Partnership around children being victims in their own right in domestic abuse and sexual offences, and the Youth Using Violence and Abuse (YUVA) service which supports families where children themselves were violent. Stressed that even when children are perpetrators, they are seen as children first. Flagged that nationally the children's secure estate placement provision was inadequate, it was unable to provide the rehabilitation and protection of those children in the Criminal Justice System.

5.    A Board member endorsed the recommendations and reinforced the point that the Duty was statutory partners’ responsibility. The needs assessment looked at police data which was only a fraction of the relevant data that provides the whole picture, information sharing across the Partnership was therefore crucial. Noted that the Duty sought to address and provide oversight over the elements of serious violence that had been neglected in the past.

6.    The Chair asked whether the data collection was about seeing patterns around victims and perpetrators that would be valuable to the early intervention and prevention work by other partners and services. A Board member noted that when trying to assess the information needed, it was important to incorporate what all the other partners need.

7.    The Chair asked whether other partners had been liaised with stating what was needed to gain value from the data to help with the prevention and early intervention work. It had been a longstanding issue that data had been collected but not all of it was useful to other agencies; hoped that over time patterns would emerge and the data would be valuable to the other agencies. The Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) stressed that data insights and intelligence was vital to get right, police data was gathered easily through the needs assessment, yet there were limitations in extraction across multiple cases.

8.    The Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) explained that there was a read across the needs assessment, looking at areas that increase the risk of becoming involved or a victim of violence. Data extraction and cross referencing across cohorts was challenging, part of the next phase was to look at that in more detail. There had been funding for a Public Health analyst to provide support and do that read across the Combating Drugs Partnership; and funding for a police analyst to investigate that data and how it could be shared. A few years ahead in the work were national Violence Reduction Units; Thames Valley Police could pull together that data and share it from across the partnership.

9.    The Chair asked whether that other data was able to be collected from other agencies. A Board member noted that the Board could provide that advocacy to ensure that their organisations look for a reason to share that data rather than not to, data access had been a longstanding issue. The Chair suggested a discussion outside of the meeting around overcoming the barriers.

10.  A Board member was excited for Public Health to host of one the analyst posts as data triangulation was vital to any needs assessment; it was a partnership and was iterative with data being layered.

11.  A Board member noted that the only way to understand data in terms of people committing serious violence or becoming a victim of it was to understand their stories, that was being built into the Changing Futures cohort. Noted the large number of Domestic Homicide Reviews and safeguarding adults and child reviews, where prevention was vital and those two cohorts should be focused on. Regarding suicide surveillance and prevention, there was a responsibility to know those people’s stories as many had experienced serious violence.



1.      Considered the progress made against the Serious Violence Duty.

2.      Endorsed the establishment of a Surrey Serious Violence Reduction Partnership.

3.      Supported the proposed Serious Violence Reduction narrative and priority areas that will be at the core of the Surrey Serious Violence Reduction Strategy.


Actions/further information to be provided:


1.    The Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) will circulate a comprehensive PowerPoint Presentation summarising the data of crime numbers in Surrey.

2.    Regular updates will be included in the Highlight Report on the work by the Surrey Serious Violence Reduction Partnership under Priority Three.

3.    The Serious Violence Programme Lead (OPCC) will have a discussion with the Chair around overcoming the barriers around data collection.


Supporting documents: