The Neighbourhood and Home Watch Network (NHWN) was commissioned by the Minister for State for Policing, Nick Herbert, to act as a conduit for Citizen Patrols.
The NHWN facilitated two workshops in March 2012 with delegates attending from Street Watch, Street Pastors and Street Angels, along with a variety of community and police volunteers and representatives from the police service, Victim Support and housing organisations.
There are numerous organisations and community groups across England and Wales who patrol within their communities to help make it a safer and nicer place to live. Citizen Patrols are not a new concept but the diversity of how they are being organised and managed is. However, there are no aspirations for NHWN to implement a governance structure for Citizen Patrols as local governance and accountability already work well. NHWN hopes to work with existing groups, organisations and police forces by signposting interested parties to relevant services. This will be by using and developing the Our Watch website and other communication methods to make information more accessible and relevant for members, the police and the public.
Speakers at the workshops included the Chair and Operations Director of NHWN and speakers from ACPO (Association of Chief Police Officers) and the NPIA (National Policing Improvement Agency).
The workshops identified points in common and differences in the ways the various Citizen Patrols groups and organisations work together. They also discussed barriers experienced and solutions as well as 'next steps' that the participants would like to see.
Citizen Patrols Workshops Report