Hardyal Dhindsa with Nadine Rae (LGBT Officer for Derby North)
A carnival atmosphere greeted Derbyshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Hardyal Dhindsa as he turned out to two key summer events in his quest to meet and mingle with local people.
The PCC first attended a street party hosted by Derbyshire Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) on Saturday 2 July which was organised to celebrate the first anniversary of its new centre on Bramble Street.
Joining local police officers and members of the Special Constabulary, Mr Dhindsa chatted to members of the LGBT community and shared helpful hate crime reporting and support advice. The team also conducted a survey on hate crime to collect feedback about personal crime experiences and promoted the CORE website which directs victims of crime to specialised support.
On Sunday, Mr Dhindsa visited Aston-On-Trent’s popular Well Dressing Festival to admire the impressive natural works of art which will be on display in the picturesque village until Thursday 7 July.
The charity event, which is in its 70th year and launched on Saturday, provided the Commissioner with an ideal opportunity to answers questions on community safety and listen to the public’s views on local policing.
Mr Dhindsa has pledged to visit all 383 towns and villages across Derbyshire during his term of office in a ‘meet and greet’ marathon being billed on social media as the #D383 tour.
The demanding schedule has been designed to help the PCC understand what local people want to make them feel safer and how he can do things differently to improve their experience of policing.
Mr Dhindsa said: “I’ve promised to listen to the people of Derbyshire and that means taking proactive action to go out into the community and meet the very residents who need and rely on policing services.
“It was a privilege to be part of such positive and uplifting events over the weekend. We know from our engagement work and crime statistics the LBGT community in particular continue to face discrimination on a daily basis despite the progress made over the years to promote a tolerant, embracing and accepting society.
“We look forward to having a closer relationship with the LGBT community who have an important voice that needs to be listened to and this event provided us with a great opportunity of doing just that. We are continually trying to improve our response to the public, particularly victims of crime, and listening to members of the community across Derbyshire who have personal experience of criminality will help us to deliver the right support when it is needed.”
Saturday’s LGBT street party was attended by a wide age range from teenagers to people in their 80’s and included a cabaret show with two of Derbyshire’s best-loved drag queens as well as a DJ karaoke competition, an auction of promises, live music and traditional side shows including a tombola, white elephant stall, ‘hook a duck’, ‘splat a rat’, and ‘chase the lady’.
The Well Dressing event, held on The Green in Derby Road, opened with a blessing service at All Saints Church on Saturday 2 July and was followed by a celebration on The Green including games, crafts, magicians, puppets and live music.
Mr. Dhindsa said: “I had such a warm welcome from the organisers of the event especially Ian Dunn the Secretary and Steve the Chair of Aston on Trent Well Dressers and was most interested to be shown the history of the well dressing which goes back 30 years and links to the centuries old tradition of the Peak District area. I was able to meet the local Safer Neighbourhood Team PCSO and Vice Chair of the Neighbourhood Watch and was most impressed by their local community spirit”.
Media Enquiries: Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401
Posted on Wednesday 6th July 2016