Increased police patrols are heading for Dewsbury for a five-week campaign to tackle child sexual exploitation and anti-social behaviour.
During the operation, there will be high visibility patrols with police officers and partner agencies in and around Dewsbury town centre, while specialist safeguarding officers, who are trained in dealing with sexual exploitation, will be giving advice to young people.
PC Nicola Wiltshire, leading the anti-social element of the operation, said: “The aim is to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour within Dewsbury and make the town centre a better place for the community.
“We hope that the increased police presence over the coming weeks will be welcomed by the community.
“Our officers and representatives from partner agencies will be engaging with the public and young public in the area and will be on hand to provide help and advice as well as crime prevention tips.
“We are dedicated to making our communities will safer for all and would encourage anyone to come along to any of the sessions at the drop-in centre if you have any questions or concerns.”
PC Chris Birkenshaw, of Kirklees District Police, said: “Tackling child abuse is not something that any one agency can do in isolation, which is why we work closely with other organisations and charities to support victims, bring offenders to justice and make our communities safer.
“With an increased police presence in Dewsbury, officers will be able to engage with the public and young people both at the youth centres and in the town centre itself, as well as providing help and advice such as crime prevention tips.
“We would urge anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse, whether recent or historic, to report it to the police. Please be assured that you will be listened to, taken seriously and supported by professionals with experience of dealing with these kind of offences.”
The operation will begin in Dewsbury on Friday, March 24 and will run every Friday and Saturday until April 22.
A free drop-in cafe will be opened in the youth centre under the town hall in Dewsbury; it will be open between 3pm and 10pm on Fridays and 10am until 10pm every Saturday. The cafe is open to all members of the public.
A court fines surgery will be held within the cafe to help people who have any concerns about paying any fines; they can come and get advice and put measures in place to resolve their issues.
On the launch day of the operation, Lucas Walshaw from the Dewsbury Rams will be at the cafe between 3-5pm to advice young people about a new programme at the club.