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Commissioner’s young volunteers set to challenge constabulary

10 June 2021

Police and Crime Commissioner, Donna Jones, has set up a group of young volunteers to review and challenge policing practices to help make improvements to the service and how the force interacts with young people.

The Strategic Youth Independent Advisory Group (YIAG) is a volunteer group for those aged 14 to 25 years who live, work or are in education in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.  The members will be challenging, reviewing and scrutinising policing in relation to issues that impact young people such as violence against women and girls, drug use, mental health, online exploitation and other topics that they choose to explore.

The members will not only be offering their views but seeking the opinions of their community as part of the review process. The YIAG members will present their findings directly to senior police officers.

The 19 volunteers that form the new YIAG met for the first time on Wednesday 9 June for an introductory session.

Donna Jones, Police and Crime Commissioner, said:

“Building better relationships between the police and young people is vital, and giving young people a voice is a big part of that.

“I am very grateful to the young people who have chosen to join the Strategic Youth Independent Advisory Group, their views and those they will gather from their peers will be taken on board and influence changes in working practices that will benefit everyone.”

Comments from some of the YIAG members on why they have volunteered to take part:

Chloe age 19 from Wickham said: “I would like more young people’s voices to be heard and I think it will be a great opportunity to meet new people and make a change within my community.”

Jack age 23 from Waterlooville said: “To make a difference in my local community, and to help the police develop strategies to help prevent young people from engaging in crime.”

Kimberley age 18 from Hythe said:  “To help within the community, be a voice for the young people, someone the young people can know trust and communicate with.”

Owen age 16 from Basingstoke said: “To share my experiences and represent people my age.”

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