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Community Safety Strategic Assessment

The St. Helens Community Safety Strategic Assessment is currently in production. It will be summarised fully here once published.

Following an assessment of crime statistics by the UK Statistics Authority, published in January 2014, and a follow-up HMIC Inspection in November 2014, the statistics based on police recorded crime data were found not to meet the required standard for designation as National Statistics. Police recorded crime is not currently considered a reliable measure of trends in crime for most crime types, since it is prone to changes in recording practices and police activity as well as changing behaviour in public reporting of crime. As a result, trends will not always reflect changing levels of criminal activity. Apparent increases in police recorded crime seen over the last 2 years may reflect a number of factors, including tightening of recording practice, process improvements, increases in reporting by victims and also genuine increases in the levels of crime.

A further Crime Data Integrity Inspection by HMIC in 2016 found that despite improvements, there were still deficiencies in Merseyside Police's crime recording process, with nearly 16% of reported crime going unrecorded. A series of recommendations were made which Merseyside Police are now working to implement.

The Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) is a face-to-face victimisation survey in which people resident in households in England and Wales are asked about their experiences of a selected range of offences in the 12 months prior to the interview. For the population and offence types it covers, the CSEW generally provides the better measure of trends on a consistent basis over time, because it is unaffected by changes in levels of reporting to the police or police recording practices. The methodology employed in the main count of crime has remained comparable since the survey began in 1981. It was also confirmed in December 2016 that the crime statistics produced by the CSEW retained their National Statistics “badge”.

The CSEW allows for the calculation of estimates based on a variety of different measures, including the number of incidents of crime, and the number of victims. Using population estimates it is also possible to calculate the corresponding number of incidents per 1,000 population (the incident rate) and the number of victims per 1,000 population (the prevalence or victimisation rate).

The latest release is available at Crime Survey for England and Wales 2017.


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