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Welcome to Year of the Volunteer!

Sefton Council, in partnership with Sefton CVS, is dedicating 2018 as the Year of the Volunteer!

Following on from the huge success of the Year of the Coast, the tireless work of Sefton’s thousands of volunteers, who give thousands of hours of their time each week, will be celebrated in a yearlong campaign to raise awareness of how much volunteers do for the borough.

Volunteers make a real difference in Sefton. They touch people’s lives in so many different ways, providing comfort and support, fostering community development, and actively helping to keep Sefton clean, green and beautiful.

Volunteering also has a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of those who participate in it.

The Year of the Volunteer will be officially launched on Tuesday, February 6 at The Atkinson, Southport. Here partners, community groups and residents can learn more about what 2018 has in store for the volunteer sector and how to get involved.

Throughout the year we will be celebrating a number of different volunteer themes including health and wellbeing, animals and the environment, culture, the armed forces and youth volunteering.

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said:

“In recognising the valuable role that volunteers play, it made sense that 2018 becomes the Year of the Volunteer.

“This theme will not only celebrate the vital work that volunteers do, but hopefully it will encourage other people to get involved as well.

“Throughout the year we hope to celebrate the valuable contribution that volunteers make, highlight the volunteering opportunities available in Sefton and increase the number of people who sign up to volunteering activities.”

Sefton CVS Chief Executive Angela White OBE said

“Sefton CVS and the Volunteer Centre Sefton are delighted to be working in partnership with Sefton Council to highlight the work of local volunteers and the organisations across the borough throughout 2018”.

“The Volunteer Centre Sefton will continue to play an active role I supporting local residents to access volunteer roles, and also support local voluntary, community and faith sector groups to recruit, manage and retain volunteers”.  

 Further information about the launch event and themes for Year of the Volunteer will be released in due course here.

Public Space Protection Order

As part of Sefton Council’s commitment to promote responsible dog ownership, we are consulting on introducing new dog control measures. Consultation on introducing a new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) across the whole of the borough will start today (February 6) and will last until April 11. A Public Space Protection Order is an official measure that is an enforceable part of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. PSPOs can be used to protect the public from behaviour that is having or is likely to have a harmful effect on the quality of life of those in an area. As part of the consultation, Sefton will look at how Enforcement officers will continue to be able to issue fixed penalty notices to any one in charge of a dog who does not remove their dog’s mess straightaway from land (£75). This will also include how dog walkers are to always carry a bag or other means for cleaning up after their dog has fouled at all times. Other details being consulted about look at restricting the number of dogs that can be walked by a single individual on and off the lead, prohibiting dogs from entering defined areas – open or enclosed playgrounds, marked/fenced sports pitches or courts and dog free zones on the beach. It would also require dogs to be kept on a lead in defined areas including: designated picnic or family areas, designated wildlife areas, all public roads/footways, the grounds of cemeteries and crematoria, fenced conservation grazing when livestock are present and designated nature reserves. Dog owners can also be asked to put their dogs on leads when directed to do so by an authorised officer.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Cabinet Member Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services, said: “This is just the start of the process to consult on introducing a PSPO in Sefton. “Many other local authorities across the country have introduced similar orders to great effect as it encourages greater responsible dog ownership. It also promotes a cleaner and greener environment which everyone can enjoy. “Most dog owners across the borough already do most of the things in the proposed order anyway, so if introduced it will have very little or no impact on them at all. “Please take the time to read about the proposed order and tell us what you think about it.”  

To get involved visit Engage Space

Launch Of Campaign Against Business Robberies

Sefton Council is supporting a Merseyside Police initiative which looks to protect local shops and businesses in the run up to Christmas.

Officers across Merseyside will clamp down on robbers seeking to make the most of the festive season by stealing from shops, bookmakers, pubs and other businesses in the run up to Christmas.

Traditionally at this time of the year thieves step up a gear – shops are stocking up for Christmas, members of the public are buying Christmas presents and business is booming – and some would-be thieves think some businesses are easy pickings. Police and businesses in Merseyside are working hard to make sure that is not the case.

The message is clear – Christmas is a time for giving, not taking. And thanks to this initiative and work with businesses to improve security measures, opportunities for would-be offenders will be limited and there will be no hiding place.

The event follows the launch of ‘Gamble Watch’ where the police, environmental health, the gambling commission, pubs, betting shops, amusement arcades and bingo halls all work together to prevent business robberies and share information about offenders.

Posters and leaflets will be distributed by officers to every business of this type across Liverpool in the run to Christmas to educate staff about ensuring they have very little readily accessible cash available, how to report suspicious behaviour and ensure they have maximum security measures in place.

Communities in each of the five force areas (Wirral, Sefton, Knowsley, Liverpool and St Helens) will see an increased presence in their town centres and shopping parades.

High visibility and plain clothes officers will patrol key vulnerable locations for retail crime across the county in a bid to deter criminals attempting to target retail premises.

DNA security sprays, fogging machines and tagging systems will continue to be installed at selected business premises.

Stores have been fitted with DNA security sprays so that members of staff can mark criminals should they attempt to commit a robbery. This mark, unique to each shop or business, will then be visible under a UV light, and will make it much easier for officers to identify offenders. The use of forensic spray has been an invaluable tool used to help prevent business robberies and convict offenders.

Trackers will be attached to various items in retail stores – if they are stolen officers will be able to track where they are. Officers will also provide some vulnerable retailers with fogging devices, which can be set off by shopkeepers to disorientate offenders who threaten them, or demand cash or goods without any intention to pay for them. When detonated the fogging device will fill the store with a thick fog, which will disorientate offenders and along with the use of the forensic spray should act as a deterrent.

Superintendent Jenny Sims said: “Sadly, in the run up to Christmas some people see our retail premises as an easy target. We continue to target offenders and make arrests and our message is clear – we are investing significant resources and criminals who target bookmakers are taking huge risks and facing increasingly lengthy prison sentences for very little reward indeed. We are working with retailers to reduce the amount held on premises that is accessible to as little as £50.

“The offenders who do chance their arm and try to commit a robbery will face in the region of five or even ten years in prison when they get caught so my question to them would be: is it really worth 5 years in prison for 50 quid?

“Business robberies are not victimless crimes. Many of our convenience stores are run by local people who just want to earn a living and provide for their families. The person serving behind the counter could be someone’s mum, sister or grandmother yet these criminals think nothing of pointing a gun or a weapon at them and screaming at them to open the till or safe. Some of these people are injured and others will be left permanently traumatised by such an incident.

“In the last few weeks the force has liaised with national retail outlets as well as smaller independent convenience stores to help them make their stores less attractive to potential offenders. In the weeks leading up to Christmas the force will be providing an intelligence-led response to retail crime and we will be carrying out high visibility policing in vulnerable locations providing support to local shops and businesses. The high visibility patrols will be complemented by plain clothes officers on the lookout for those intent on committing crime at local stores.

“Retail businesses provide a vital service to our communities, so preventing these crimes is in everyone’s interest. The impact that these offences, particularly robbery, can have on those who work in the stores is huge. Sometimes if a store has been subjected to a robbery it can be difficult for staff to face going back in to work, as they fear it may happen again. We will not tolerate offenders who target local stores and create a climate of fear and intimidation and will use all the tools in our armoury to deter and prevent this type of crime and lock up those responsible for committing this retail crime.”

 

Merseyside Police Commissioner Jane Kennedy said: “Local shops and businesses provide a vital service that we all rely on. The people who run and staff these businesses don’t deserve to be threatened or attacked in exchange for their hard work.

The impact on those on the receiving end of such crimes can be huge. Some people never recover from the violence they experience. Businesses can also be hugely damaged and even be forced to close their doors.

“That’s why I welcome and support the Force’s Christmas crackdown on retail crime and their efforts to use new technology, in conjunction with intelligence-led and high visibility policing, to keep these businesses safe. I would also echo the police’s warning to any would-be criminals; our businesses are not easy pickings and anyone who targets them risks a long jail sentence.”

 

Diane Nixon, franchisee at Bargain Booze on West Derby Road, said: “As a retailer living and working in Merseyside, I know that when a criminal steals from a store it can affect not just the member of staff there at the time, but the rest of the community too. The impact, both emotionally and financially through insurance claims, can last for many months and years after the incident.

“I am committed to making sure all my stores have the best security measures in place to make sure robbers realise as soon as they set foot inside a store that their chances of success are virtually non-existent. Thanks to Merseyside Police I have had DNA spray security installed in my shops.

“Any work to prevent robberies of businesses in Merseyside can only be a good thing and I’m giving today’s launch my full support.”

Make Time To …

When was the last time… you got up and out?

Being active isn’t all about looking good, it helps us feel good too. Something as simple as going outside for a walk can make a positive difference to our mood. Discovering something you really like doing is the most important bit. When will the next time be?

The aim of Make Time is to promote the Five Ways to Wellbeing. These are a set of five activities that have been proven to help boost our mental wellbeing if we practice them regularly. Over the next few weeks we will be highlighting community activities that take place within Sefton on a regular basis.

View a list of activities taking place within Sefton this week (Nov 14-19).

Activities taking place next week (Nov 21-30)

For further information visit the Make Time website.

Business is booming in Bootle

Three Sefton businesses which have benefited from European funded support and assistance from Invest Sefton and Sefton@Work were recently visited by a Sefton councillor.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Skills, met with representatives from O.D.L Europe, Presidential Travel and Everton Glass Works who are all based in and around Bootle.

During the visits Cllr Atkinson enjoyed a tour of each of the businesses’ premises before discussing a range of subjects from their plans for the future to their working relationship with Sefton Council and Invest Sefton, the enterprise, business support and inward investment support service.

First up was O.D.L. Europe LTD, which manufactures window cassettes, enclosed blinds and screen doors. Significant investment over the last few years has seen job numbers increase from 13 to 27 and O.D.L works closely with Sefton@Work to provide employment to local residents.

O.D.L has recent further expanded its premises in a bid to increase turnover substantially over the next three years. The company is working closely with Invest Sefton’s export arm in a bid to grow its European sales to around 10-15% of its total.

During the visit Mark Towners, O.D.L Europe Managing Director, told Cllr Atkinson about the company’s plans to recruit a further 3 new apprentices, 1 in administration and 2 in manufacturing, and led a tour of the company’s new office space.

Next up was Presidential Travel LTD, a coach and bus operator based on the Kingfisher Business Park. Established in 2008, Presidential Travel is the approved supplier to public agencies in the Liverpool City Region, including Sefton Council, schools and NHS.

The company, which has operates its own in house training facility, has worked closely with Invest Sefton through participating in tendering workshops, supplier days and chest training as in a bid to help win more business.

Cllr Atkinson met with Derek Taylor, company manager, and spent time discussing Presidential Travels growing public sector customer base and its local recruitment through Sefton@Work.

The final site visit of the day was at EG Ceramics, formerly known as Everton Glass Works LTD. Established in 1964; the business sells ceramic tiles, wallpaper, bathrooms and doors, operating from a shop in Anfield and a large warehouse with two showrooms in Bootle.

The company re-branded as EG and invested heavily in e-commerce following a slowdown in the construction industry due to the recession and now services trade across the UK.

Cllr Atkinson spent time with Jonathan Richards, Managing Director, and discussed the company’s involvement with Invest Sefton’s training workshops and business-to-business events, including the Sefton Economic Forum.

Cllr Marion Atkinson, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration & Skills, said: “I was delighted to spend some time visiting local businesses and hearing their success stories.

cllr-marion-atkinson1“Part of the Sefton 2030 Vision is ensuring that everybody knows that Sefton is open for business but it is also vitally important we continue to support those already operating within the borough.

“Invest Sefton has shown great expertise in supporting these businesses leading to increased growth and new job creation. They also have a unique offer in Sefton@Work which can support residents finding employment. I urge any Sefton business seeking to grow to get in touch with the team.”

 

 

 

Mark Towners, Managing Director of O.D.L Europe Ltd, said: “Sefton has always been the home to ODL Europe and as we continue to grow and develop we have tried to remain part of the community.

“We have been part of the Bootle working community for 13 years and have always looked to recruit and develop our people from the local pool. Through the support of Sefton@Work we have been able to fill positions helping some long term unemployed staff back into work. We have also been successful at finding and training apprentices, offering full time roles when they have completed the NVQ qualifications.

“During the last 5 years we have also had help and advice from Invest Sefton on implementation of new investment to help the efficiency of our manufacturing facility.

“As an exporter we look to increase our opportunity into the wider global markets and have been a supporter of Export Sefton which brought together like minded businesses who can help other local companies to take the step to grow their business outside of the local and national boundaries.

“We have always found that working with the local council and its varied departments is a two way street, something that I would recommend to other local businesses.”

For more information on Invest Sefton, visit investsefton.com

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