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New funding for safer streets
All Scotland's local authorities will be able to apply for funding from the Scottish Government to help ensure that people going out for the night can enjoy themselves in a safe environment.
The Safer Streets funding of £400,000 will be available to Community Safety Partnerships from November 2009 - March 2010.
It is to be divided between all 32 local authorities to fund community safety initiatives including high visibility police patrols in 'hot spot' areas, street pastors, targeting of street drinkers, enhanced CCTV and late night taxi marshalls.
Announcing the funding before meeting police officers and community wardens in Glasgow, Minister for Community Safety Fergus Ewing said:
"It is only right that people going out for a meal or a drink or to a show can do so free from the threat of aggressive or antisocial behaviour.
"With crime at its lowest for 25 years and record numbers of police officers serving our communities, this Government is working to make Scotland safer and stronger.
"This additional funding for all Scotland's local authorities will support community safety projects that seek to reduce violence, particularly alcohol fuelled violence in our towns and cities and stop the minority spoiling the fun for the rest of us.
"Initiatives such as high visibility police patrols, taxi marshalls and street pastors all contribute to making our streets safer.
"We are committed to work together to help ensure that people can go out and have an enjoyable, relaxing time."
Phil Walker, managing director of Glasgow Community and Safety Services, said:
"The funding allocated by the Government through its Safer Streets initiative allows GCSS, the Police and other local partners to deliver an extended range of services at our NiteZones throughout the city over the festive period.
"While many people plan where to go, what to wear and what to do on a night out, very few plan how to get home - that's where Nite Zone comes in.
"Nite Zones provide a safe and secure environment for residents and visitors to get home quickly and safely from a night out and the additional funding allows us to make a night out even safer for the city's revellers."
Chief Superintendent Anne McGuire, Strathclyde Police said:
"Glasgow city centre continues to attract up to 100,000 visitors to its vibrant weekend and night time economy and ensuring these people get home safely is a priority for myself and my officers. The assistance of the Safer Streets funding will help us sustain and strengthen our resources in that regard."
Any contribution which can directly assist us in reducing violence and increasing community safety is one of great value and will only serve to enhance our service delivery".
The Safer Streets initiative is a nationally directed, locally delivered programme, building upon existing partnership working to conduct high visibility, high impact, joint initiatives to reduce alcohol-related violence and disorder in city and town centres.
Long term, it aims to encourage Community Safety Partnerships to build capacity, encourage innovation, deliver a sustainable change to practice and share that practice. Over the past three years mainstreaming the activities has commenced.