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Tackling recent issues in Portsmouth’s public spaces

Stephen Morgan MP is continuing to take action on concerns raised by constituents over inconsiderate and anti-social behaviour on Southsea Common, the seafront, Hotwalls and other public areas across the constituency.

Whilst the management of the city’s green and open spaces rests with the city council, the Portsmouth South MP has been concerned by the level and frequency of reports on rubbish dumped, lack of social distancing, inconsiderate parking and large gatherings which have led to drug use and anti-social behaviour in certain parts of Portsmouth.

Concerns have been raised that issues which are often seasonal have been acerbated due to the coronavirus crisis. Whilst some progress has been made, complaints and incidents continue and appear in some cases to be getting worse.

As result of further conversations, lobbying and liaison with senior officers, the following is an update on efforts by key public services and what we can expect next to manage the situation, which Stephen is encouraging as an MP:

Update – 2 June 2020

Prioritising issues, the plan now includes:

  • A specific district patrol plan has been developed in response to recent reported incidents resulting in a focus from the police’s response and neighbourhood teams
  • Further (section 32) dispersal orders in place (Hotwalls, 2-3 June)
  • Additional Special Constables from the police’s response teams will join neighbourhood teams to tackle local incidents and increase visible presence
  • A dedicated Covid Operation with a patrol car and officers is forming part of patrol plans
  • Additional support from the MOD Police in patrolling the seafront
  • A request for an additional Sergeant and team to support the patrols has been made to help increase a presence in problem areas.

Alongside this, the police continue to work with Street Pastors, a private security firm employed by the city council to patrol the Hotwalls and the city council’s community warden service.

Portsmouth City Council and Hampshire Police hold responsibility for keeping public spaces safe, and a cross-departmental group is problem solving issues raised in recent weeks. Stephen expects this group to take swift and successful to help stop the issues being encountered.

Stephen Morgan MP is continuing to work with different agencies to prioritise concerns, residents’ views are heard and ensure action is taken. Constituents are also encouraged to share problems and solutions with their local ward councillors.

You can see more information about the engagement that the city MP has had on this issue here: https://www.stephenmorgan.org.uk/keeping-us-safe/

Please continue to report individual incidents in the usual way:

  • Littering/flytipping: here
  • Anti-Social Behaviour: here
  • Hampshire Police: here
  • Parking: here
  • The public should continue to report crimes in the usual way by calling 101 and for emergencies 999.