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Welsh government asks Wales to make a stand

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welshgovIN THE WEEK when the Gender-Based Violence, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) Bill goes before the National Assembly, the Welsh Government has launched an awareness campaign asking people to make a stand against all forms of such violence and abuse.

The Welsh Government is asking the people of Wales to openly declare their intolerance of these types of abuse by posting photographs of themselves linking arms on Facebook and Twitter and using the hashtag #makingastandwales. The photos will mirror an advertising campaign which began on Monday, June 30, on poster sites and LCD panels around Welsh railway stations, showing groups of figures linking arms. The year-long campaign will pose the question ‘What will you do?’ and will raise awareness of the support services available to those experiencing domestic abuse, violence against women and sexual violence. More information will also be made available to the public on what to do if they suspect someone may be a victim or perpetrator. In Jenny’s case she was 19-years-old when she was referred to Community Services by her social worker. Eighteen months prior to the referral Jenny fell pregnant, at which point the abuse from her then partner became physical and financial. At first, Jenny failed to engage with the support, missing appointments and making excuses. She also hid the truth from her social worker. After four months of failed attempts to engage, there was a final incident which made Jenny realise she needed help to keep herself and her son safe. Jenny said: “One day I was driving home with my son in the babyseat when I became aware of my ex-partner in his car directly behind us. He had obviously followed us and was driving like a maniac. He was furious about something and bumped the back of my car several times. He had never been violent towards our baby before. Knowing that he wanted to harm me even though he could harm our son in the process made me realise that I needed help. I was still terrified, but at that point I knew I had to do something to protect my son – no matter what. After ten months of support all of the goals Community Services had set with Jenny had been achieved. A risk assessment was completed and the risk was considerably reduced. There was still a chance the perpetrator could come to the house but a safety plan was in place and Jenny has since chosen to end support, safe in the knowledge that she can ring the emergency number she has been given at any time. All those in need of help or further information will be signposted to the Live Fear Free website – livefearfree.org. uk and the All Wales Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Helpline – 0808 8010800. The Minister for Local Government and Government Business, Lesley Griffiths AM, said: “Colleagues, f r i e n d s , neighbours and even family members may be afraid of acting on their s u s p i c i o n s of abuse for fear they are mistaken, interfering or even making the victim’s situation worse. With this campaign, we aim to empower people with information to act in the right way if they suspect abuse may be taking place. “We want people to openly declare they are united against these types of abuse. So we are appealing to groups of friends, neighbours, office, shop or factory workers, and social groups from book clubs to sports teams to publicly make a stand and begin to help us break this taboo.” The Welsh Government’s funding in this area totals £4m which supports third sector organisations delivering direct services to victims and education on healthy relationships in schools. The funding also supports domestic abuse co-ordinators and independent domestic violence advisers across Wales, as well as the 24 hour All- Wales domestic abuse helpline to provide help, advice and emergency support. If you are experiencing domestic abuse or suspect that someone you know is, call the All Wales Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Helpline on 0808 80 10 800 or visit www. l i v e f e a r f r e e . org.uk

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Charity

RNLI prepare for summer with medical training exercise in Pembrokeshire

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RNLI lifeguards from the north Pembrokeshire team, volunteers from St Davids RNLI and St Davids Coastguard Rescue Team came together at Whitesands beach on Thursday (18 April), for a multi-agency medical training exercise. Pembrokeshire RNLI lifeguards and St Davids volunteer lifeboat crew took part in a multi-agency medical training exercise alongside St Davids Coastguard Rescue Team in preparation for the upcoming summer season.

The Coastal Medicine programme was set up six years ago at the suggestion of clinicians from Hywel Dda University Health Board. The aim of the programme is train lifeguards, lifeboat crews and HM Coastguard teams in working collaboratively when responding to medical incidents on the coast.

Clinicians from Hywel Dda work with RNLI staff to design exercises simulating mass-casualty incidents on land and afloat. The exercises allow lifeguards, lifeboat crews and Coastguard teams to practise and test their rescue response and casualty care.

The simulated incident at Whitesands involved a medical incident at sea leading to a boat going out of control and ploughing through a group of swimmers causing multiple injuries. RNLI lifeguards responded to casualties on the beach while St Davids inshore and all-weather lifeboat crews dealt with the situation at sea. St Davids Coastguard Rescue supported RNLI colleagues as they would in a real-life scenario.

In total there were six casualties to treat, all of whom were given the immediate medical care by the teams on scene. As in a real-life scenario, they were then prepared to be handed over to the care of the Ambulance Service.

Roger Smith, RNLI Area Lifesaving Manager said: ‘The scenario was based on a real-life incident, it’s so important that we train in dealing with challenging situations.

‘The RNLI lifeguards, lifeboat crew, and the Coastguard rescue team worked really well together collaborating together to achieve the best possible result.

‘The feedback from all the participants was really positive, and our medical colleagues were very complimentary about the competence shown and the inter-agency co-operation.

‘This scenario training gives confidence to our lifeguards and lifeboat crews, and ensures the teamwork and communication is already in place ready for real-life incidents.’

Martin Charlton, an RNLI lifeguard in north Pembrokeshire said:

‘Last night’s exercise was a great opportunity for me and my colleagues on the lifeguard team to upskill ahead of the summer season.

‘We regularly attend incidents in the season that require a multi-agency response. These scenarios are a brilliant opportunity to prepare for the the most challenging situations.

‘The team and I thoroughly enjoyed the exercise and feel better prepared for the season as a result.

‘It’s always a pleasure working alongside the Coastguard rescue team and the lifeboat as one crew.’

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Crime

Brian Davis: Wanted on suspicion of commercial burglary

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POLICE are appealing for information to find Brian Davis, from the Pembroke Dock area.
The 53-year-old is wanted on suspicion of commercial burglary and fail to appear at court.
Have you seen Brian, or do you have information that might help us find him? Please, let the police know:
🖥️ | https://orlo.uk/wr13X
📧 | [email protected]
💬 | Direct message us on social media
📞 | 101
Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.
Quote reference: BRC818624

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Business

1,000 thefts a day: Labour calls for more support for high streets

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SHOCK analysis by the Labour Party has revealed more than 1,000 shoplifting offences are being committed across England and Wales every day – equating to an offence almost every minute of the day.

Yet separate Freedom of Information requests submitted by the party to police forces suggest that charges have fallen by a quarter over the past five years.

Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Mid and South Pembrokeshire, Henry Tufnell, was out visiting local businesses in Tenby last week (April 19) to hear about the challenges presented by shoplifting and anti-social behaviour.

Henry Tufnell, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Mid and South Pembrokeshire, said: “Pembrokeshire relies upon local businesses to grow our local economy, support jobs, and drive tourism. Today’s stats are clear: the Conservatives have lost control.

“Labour has a plan to ensure our town centres are a safe, enjoyable place for Pembrokeshire residents to spend time in. Coupled with the Welsh Labour Government’s Transforming Towns scheme, which will provide £27 million by 2025 in South West Wales towards funding projects to regenerate and support our town centres, Labour’s priority is breathing life back into our high streets.”

Philippa Thompson, Labour’s Police and Crime Commissioner candidate for Dyfed Powys Police, joined with members of the Co-operative Party and USDAW, the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers, to campaign for stronger protections for retail workers.

Today’s announcement comes shortly after the UK government finally committed to introduce a new offence for assault of a retail worker, which Labour, the Co-op and USDAW have called for, for more than a decade.

Labour’s Police and Crime Commissioner candidate for Dyfed Powys Police, Philippa Thompson, said:

“A Labour Government in Westminster means we’ll see more police on the streets, a crackdown on anti-social behaviour, and on retail crime. As a Labour & Co-operative Party candidate, today I am campaigning with USDAW to strengthen protections for retail workers against the assault and abuse they face at work.

It has taken the Conservatives ten years to heed what Labour, the Co-operative Party and USDAW have been saying, and introduce a specific offence for assault of a retail worker. The Tories have run out of steam and run out of ideas, and it’s time for a change. Only Labour can deliver that change.”

Since September, Labour has been calling for the Tories to scrap their Shoplifter’s Charter, which is leaving criminals to steal with impunity.

The rule, brought in by Theresa May in 2014, introduced a new category of ‘low-value shoplifting’ to describe theft of goods worth under £200 and has led to police deprioritising enforcement in these cases – even where there are repeat offences or organised shoplifting. This has left businesses and retail workers at the mercy of criminals.
 
Alongside removing the Tories’ £200 rule, Labour has vowed to put 13,000 more neighbourhood police and PCSOs back on the streets and introduce a Community Policing Guarantee to tackle shoplifting.

Yvette Cooper MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, said: “Under the Tories too many communities and high streets are being blighted by staggering increases in shoplifting, but charge rates are going down. That means more criminals are getting away with it and more local businesses are paying the price.
 
“The Conservative government has decimated neighbourhood policing, leaving our town centres unprotected, and they are still refusing to get rid of the £200 rule, which is encouraging repeat offending and organised gangs of shoplifters.
 
“Labour will scrap the Tories’ Shoplifter’s Charter and bring in a Community Policing Guarantee, with 13,000 more neighbourhood police and PCSOs to crackdown on shoplifting and keep the public safe.”

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