Readers' letters - March 28
Regarding anti-social behaviour, there is one answer to deal with it more effectively and that is restoring the police budget.
For many years now the Police and Crime Commissioner has been warning that front-line services are suffering and that this affects the crime statistics.
A properly funded social services and probation system, restored to the public sector with properly trained staff, is part of the wider picture to tackle this problem.
Austerity and the cuts in public services have greatly impacted on the police, probation services, courts and social workers, alongside the NHS. These services struggle to cope with the many issues that anti-social behaviour bring to our public services.
In the 1980s, the Conservative Government tried the punishment route by issuing tougher sentences to young offenders in detention centres and young offender institutions. It failed to reduce offending on two counts.
It did little to address offending behaviour while the young people were incarcerated, neither did it have any significant impact on re-offending rates, as incarceration of first offenders only put them into contact with more prolific damaged individuals. It also increased the cost on the detention centre system at that time.
Council cutbacks have impacted greatly on local services dealing with drug or alcohol addictions, as well as social services not having enough trained staff for anger management, dysfunctional parenting and the raft of issues that confront our community services every day.
We need to put money behind treatment and recognise the impact that austerity has had on our communities.
Support the 6.5m carers
A total of 6.5 million people in the UK care, unpaid, for a disabled, older or ill family member or friend.
Whilst caring can be rewarding, without the right support, it can also take a serious toll on a carer’s health, relationships and finances.
That’s why, this Carers Week (12-18 June), we are asking individuals and communities up and down the UK to do what they can to make life that little bit easier for carers. Whoever you are, whatever you do, you can make a difference.
This year, we want to highlight the importance of Carer Friendly Communities – places where local people and services understand what it’s like to be a carer and show what they are doing to help and support carers better.
As such, we’re asking people to visit the Carers Week website to recommend Carer Friendly services. It might be an employer, local GP, pharmacy, local care service, school or a café that is Carer Friendly. We urge everyone to pledge their support to carers and make a change.
There are lots of different ways to get involved in Carers Week:
Visit the Carers Week website www.carersweek.org and:
n Recommend an organisation or service that is carer friendly
n Pledge your support for Carers Week and carry out a change that will help your organisation or service to become more carer friendly
n Run an activity or event and add it to the Carers Week website to get a free event pack with resources for your event.
n Follow Carers Week on Twitter @CarersWeek and use the hashtag #carersweek
n Like Carers Week on Facebook at www.facebook.com/carersweek and join in with the discussions.
Carers Week 2017 is made possible by Carers UK joining forces with Age UK, Carers Trust, Independent Age, Macmillan Cancer Support, Motor Neurone Disease Association, MS Society and Which? Elderly Care and kindly supported by Nutricia Advanced Medical Nutrition and the Lockwood Foundation.
Join in this Carers Week to build communities that recognise and value the vital contribution carers make to our families, communities and wider society.
Heléna Herklots CBE
Chief executive of Carers UK, on behalf of Carers Week