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UEL initiative builds greater dialogue between police and local communities 

University of East London's Centre of Professional Policing has launched Tri-Com initiative

The University of East London’s Centre of Professional Policing has launched Tri-Com, a new initiative which aims to create greater cooperation and dialogue between the University, communities across London and the police.

As part of Tri-Com’s launch, sixth formers from Westminster City School met with students on the University’s BSc (Hons) Professional Policing degree.

The University’s policing students will mentor the young people as part of the Pathways into Policing project, a project within the Tri-Com initiative which is designed to increase knowledge of the roles within policing and related careers, acting as a stepping stone into policing and other related degrees.

The University students and young people will meet regularly with police officers to discuss issues that affect them while exploring solutions and gaining a better understanding, from all sides, of challenges that exist in the community.

Ms Zainah James, a teacher from Westminster City School in central London said, “We want to be part of a cultural transformation in our city and we are massively excited to work with the police and University of East London to make this happen. 

“Our students are interested in different aspects such as psychology, policing and the investigative area of police work.  This is a great opportunity for them to learn and contribute to tackling the issues that young people across London face.

“Working with the students from the University of East London will give our pupils an insight into east London life and enable them to learn from people near their own age.”

Tri-Com’s aim is to help break down barriers and perceptions through dialogue, to enlighten, enrich and change attitudes by sharing and informing all parties of the challenges of growing up in inner London as well as policing the respective areas and in doing so prevent crime and give guidance and support to youths and the police.

Dr Sarah Jane Fox, the director of policing and the initiator of the project, explained, “Tri-Com is a collaborative partnership project which aims to encourage inclusion and engagement across London – by breaking down barriers and myths. A secondary aim is to build up more trust between the police and young people.”

Dr Fox said, “The objectives that Tri-Com is focusing on relate to understanding peer pressure: online/virtual and face-to-face. The linked aim here is to increase awareness, and as part of this to deter youths from crimes, including knife crime and online crimes while also minimising the risk of them becoming victims.”

She said, “We recognise the need to educate and inform, about the police and the role of policing by establishing avenues of communications by interactivity and mentoring. We aim to work together to problem solve, by forming collaborative groups and working from the bottom up and top down – meeting in the middle to find and explore solutions to society issues.”

Professor Julia Davidson, professor of criminology at the University of East London, said, “This project directly links into  the University’s new specialist Online Harms and Cyber Crime Unit and the work we have recently been engaging in, not only in London but across the globe.”

The university students will, in year two of their studies, engage in further community engagement projects.