Low level crime on the radar of police team

SBC leader Councillor Shona Haslam and Councillor Watson McAteer, Chair of the Police, Fire and Safer Communities Board, alongside Local Area Commander Andy McLean (centre) and the new community policing team.
SBC leader Councillor Shona Haslam and Councillor Watson McAteer, Chair of the Police, Fire and Safer Communities Board, alongside Local Area Commander Andy McLean (centre) and the new community policing team.

A new community action policing team has been launched in the Borders, aiming to tackle local issues across the area.

The new seven-strong team - including six constables and a sergeant - provide a dedicated community resource which will specifically target issues such as anti-social behaviour and on-street parking.

The team has been operational since April 1, and Scottish Borders Council are helping to fund the team through a £282,000 investment.

SBC and Police Scotland have agreed a joint process, which will see the team reporting to the Local Area Commander.

Their work will be co-ordinated by the Scottish Borders Safer Communities team, based at council HQ, using local intelligence to address specific community issues.

Performance reports will be provided to councillors to gauge the success of the team.

Chief Inspector Andy McLean, Local Area Commander for the Scottish Borders, said: “This is a really welcome and exciting joint venture between Scottish Borders Council and Police Scotland.

“This team will not be used to attend routine calls and as such will be a dedicated community resource to address local issues wherever they may occur across the Borders.

“The team will work in partnership and complement the existing police resource, but will be able to concentrate on specific issues that are identified through the joint tasking process.”

Councillor Watson McAteer, chair of Police, Fire and Rescue and Safer Communities Board, added: “This is an exciting new partnership that aims to tackle lower level crimes which affect people right across the Borders.

“Police Scotland and Scottish Borders Council will be working closely together on this new approach.”

SBC leader, Councillor Shona Haslam, added: “Our council budget announced in February focused on intervention, prevention and innovation.

“The introduction of the new community policing team fulfils all three aims, and we believe will make a significant difference to the lives of people in the Borders.”

Sergeant Rachel Campbell, who is part of the new community action team, added: “We are a very enthusiastic team who are focused on our new roles.

“We are looking forward to providing a positive impact.”