Luton partnership works to bridge the gap between young people and the police

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
‘Coppers and Communities’ wants to build stronger relationships

A partnership of three Luton based organisations Att10tive Social Enterprise, in collaboration with Luton Borough Council’s Social Justice Unit, Unit Youturn Futures, and Mary Seacole Housing Association and supported by BLCF, has launched a ground-breaking initiative titled ‘Coppers and Communities.’ This initiative aims to bridge the gap between young people and the police, fostering a better understanding and stronger relationships within the community.

The ‘Coppers and Communities’ initiative was delivered in three strategic stages. The first stage involved comprehensive secondary research, compiling insights from over 20 reports on police interactions with youth and young people. These reports were created by a wide variety of organisations from across the UK including the College of Policing and a range of Universities.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The second stage focused on primary research, which included researching more than 400 young people including at-risk young people in one-to-one sessions, group workshops across schools, colleges and community groups and gathering input from various youth stakeholders. The third stage saw the implementation of solutions derived from the research findings.

Coppers and communitiesCoppers and communities
Coppers and communities

From all this work a number of key recommendation came out of the report these included:

  • There was mistrust in the police, this was heavily influenced by the media putting out negative stories and messages and the police not countering these or not putting out anything positive

  • A lot of young people complained about how they were spoken to by the police who they met

  • The police didn’t appear to engage effectively with young people, in particular from diverse communities


The research work made a number of important recommendations. These included:

  • Better engagement between the police and young people so they don’t only engage when something negative happens

  • Young people are informed of their rights at an early stage

  • Officers are trained on how to talk to young people in a way that doesn’t automatically see them as the problem.

The plot solutions were implemented by Mary Seacole and Att10tive. These included the development of an app by Mary Seacole, which delivers messages to young people via QR codes, and a series of informative resources by Att10tive. These resources included a video training guide on police interactions, with young people acting with actual police officers, a booklet outlining police powers for officers, and an information booklet for young people on stop-and-search procedures that can be shared on social media. Additionally, Att10tive established a pilot police and community radio show called , ‘Public and the Police,’ in partnership with LUR to promote dialogue and understanding between the police force and community members.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Att10tive’s commitment to community-driven initiatives is further demonstrated through their ‘Know Your Rights’ assemblies in schools and colleges, workshops titled ‘Know Your Rights,’ and the integration of youth ambassadors within Bedfordshire police force’s Communications Department as advisors.

Managing Director of Att10tive Montell Neufville said “The ‘Coppers and Communities’ initiative exemplifies the power of collaboration and the positive impact of research-based, practical solutions that partnerships can empower young people bring to relationships with police forces”