You may be aware of the Needless Needles campaign which was launched by three women from Peterborough with the aim of tackling the problem of discarded needles in the city.
Fiona Henry, Kirsty Hadfield and Bernadette Gibbons decided to take action after noticing more needles in their neighbourhoods and have already achieved a great deal since launching the initiative.
As a council we want to tackle this problem too, and we’re always keen to listen people’s concerns and take on board any feedback and ideas.
As with many issues of this nature, the best results are achieved when we bring the whole community together, and that’s why we’ve decided to set up a new multi-agency task force and invite Fiona, Kirsty and Bernadette to be part of this.
Fiona and the rest of the team will bring specific and practical advice about which approaches are likely to have the biggest impact in the areas where they live.
I’m confident that the task force will help to produce long-term solutions to this issue to help clean up our streets.
We’re looking forward to getting to work with the group, and I will provide you with some updates on our progress in future columns.
Meanwhile we would urge anyone who finds a discarded needle not to touch it and to report it to us as soon as possible via the MyPeterborough smartphone app or by calling 01733 747474.
Our team was pleased with the decision by a London judge last week to grant an injunction on two rough sleepers accused of indecent behaviour in the city centre.
The council sought a High Court order against Charlie White and Albertina Boardean, who have been sleeping rough in St Peter’s Arcade since September last year.
We took this step because the couple’s behaviour was having a detrimental effect on residents, businesses and their customers in the area.
The injunction means that the couple have to move on from the arcade and will be arrested if they breach the order.
I would like to stress however, that this was an isolated case and seeking such an injunction is an extremely rare event for us. As a council we do everything in our power to help rough sleepers get access to support and into accommodation.
We always place support at the heart of our work but will take a firm line with anyone who commits serious offences which affect the public. We take any complaints of indecent public behaviour extremely seriously and will always look to take action in such instances.