Youth Safety Workshop
Hello, my name is Melanie and I attended the Youth Safety Workshop on the 6th December 2017 at the Sutton Life Centre, organised by the London Borough of Sutton Local Safeguarding Children’s Board (LSCB) team.
The workshop focused on a survey that was sent to young people last summer, asking how safe they felt in Sutton and if there were any issues making them feel unsafe, including issues online and around the borough. Many findings came out of the survey, most notably that 30% of young people reported feeling unsafe in parks in Sutton and that 1 in 3 young people feel unsafe online, alongside further issues related to discrimination and Sutton Town Centre. The aim of the workshop was to find out what why young people reported these issues causing them to feel unsafe, and what they, alongside partner agency representatives, feel could be done to improve the safety of our young people. The 4 areas that were discussed were: hate crime and discrimination, e-safety, crime and safety in Sutton.
Upon arrival there was a great lunch for everyone to enjoy before the workshop took place. Two local police officers attended from Sutton Police Station, two youth workers from the Quad and other representatives. Michael Wyatt, Youth Engagement Officer, People Services introduced the session and the Detective Chief Inspector for the Borough Police spoke about how to keep ourselves safe and what to do if we see a crime taking place in Sutton.
There were 4 groups of 6-10 people per table, including young people and adults, discussing various themes. A total of 7 Sutton schools were represented by students and their safeguarding leads. I went to the youth workers table where we discussed what areas we felt most unsafe in. Everyone around the table said they felt unsafe “in parks during the evening”. We discussed our reasons and what we thought could be done to change this. We also spoke about areas we did feel safe in and what is different about those areas.
We were asked to write down any crimes we had witnessed in Sutton and what actions we took at the time and what actions are appropriate to take when witnessing a crime.
All young people that attended were given a goody bag with a certificate, gift voucher, wristband, pencil and leaflets about support when reporting a crime and information regarding hate crime.
Overall, I felt that the event was a huge success and very informative. The LSCB team were pleased with the insight they had gained from young people. Information on how to raise awareness around youth safety in Sutton was shared and everyone had the opportunities to ask questions.
Thank you LSCB for organising a great event,