Drugs and alcohol ‘too easy to get’ for Notts young people
Drugs and alcohol are too easy to get and women face repeated sexual harassment, a detailed study of crime affecting Nottinghamshire young people has found.
A youth think-tank set up to examine policing and crime in the city and county has published the findings of its four-month research project.
The Nottinghamshire Youth Commission interviewed more than 1,000 young people. Its findings included;
Drugs and alcohol are too accessible to young people
A view within universities that students are consuming too much alcohol which is too easy to get in large quantities
Fears raised around sexual harassment, particularly among young women, and female students in particular
It also found young men are also victims of sexual harassment, but are often reluctant to report their experiences to police.
Gabrielle Jones, a Youth Commission member, said: “Never before has such a large group of young people in Nottinghamshire been invited to talk frankly and openly about what worries them about crime and how local police can improve their relationship with the younger generation.
“Young people need to feel that are being listened to and that their opinions valued.”
The Youth Commission’s work concentrated on six key areas: drugs, alcohol and sexual harassment, relationship with the police, stop and search, crime prevention and education, the link between crime and poverty and re-offending and rehabilitation.
It also looked at how young people view police officers, with some positive responses but others saying too often their only interaction with police involved being moved on from public places.
Supt Ted Antill of Nottinghamshire Police has attended meetings with the commission, including presentations on the study.
He promised the force would now act on its findings.
He said: “I was struck by the enthusiasm and commitment of the young people there, for tackling the issues they had identified. The presentations were delivered in a mature way and with an honesty that was at times uncomfortable for me and police colleagues.
“However, it is exactly this honesty that will develop the trust that will be so essential to the success of this work. There was also a refreshing acknowledgement that the responsibility for providing solutions does not rest solely with the police, but that all present had a part to play.
“I have no doubt that real and sustainable change can be brought about as a result of this work.”