The last year has been a period of great change for the Scottish Community Safety Network (SCSN) with changes in staffing – departure of long-serving members of staff Denise Huntridge (Business Support Officer) after seven years’ service; and the departure of Andy Price, National Development Officer and David Barbour, Communications Officer. Hannah Dickson, our other National Development Officer, was on secondment to the Building Safer Communities Programme from May to October 2016 and was on maternity leave from October 2016.

During this time a new Business Support Officer, Dawn Exley, has joined us and David Barbour has remained with us part-time fulfilling some of our communications work including the newsletter Safety NET-works and our Twitter feed @SCSN2. Hannah has also recently returned to work as National Development Officer.

Following the AGM In August 2017 we also have a new Board and whilst office bearers have yet to be formally appointed Mark McCall and Ian Hanley remain as Chair and Vice-Chair, respectively.

Despite all these changes SCSN has continued to make significant progress against the 2015-18 Strategic Plan through training and events, analysis of key community safety issues and regular updates on national policy matters. More detail can be found in the 2016-17 Annual Report[1]. The Board wish to extend their thanks to the staff team and the members who have supported the organisation in the past year and for member’s and partner’s patience during this challenging period.

These challenges have, however, afforded the opportunity for SCSN to reflect on the evolving community safety landscape. Hayley Barnett has been seconded since April 2017 to the role of Improvement and Partnership Manager in collaboration with Scottish Government and COSLA and some of the work she has undertaken as part of this will assist SCSN to better understand the current and future landscape of community safety.

SCSN’s Strategic Plan ends in March 2018 and as well as redeveloping this we are undertaking a review of our governance and organisational structure to ensure we remain at the forefront of tackling community safety issues in line with the Building Safer Communities Programme.  This review has led to the removal of the SCSN manager’s post and Jacqui Doig has left the organisation after 7 years at the helm. The manager’s post was critical to the development of the SCSN to be the leading membership organisation that it has become, however the board felt that in order for SCSN to be at the forefront of influencing national policy, diversifying to meet the changing landscape and supporting local delivery in the future an enhanced focus on strategic development was required.  With this in mind we are pleased to announce Lorraine Gillies as our new Chief Officer who will be working with SCSN’s Board, staff, members and partners to:

  • Identify and progress a clear remit, role and structure for SCSN
  • Review SCSN’s Strategic Plan
  • Identify opportunities for SCSN to support and influence the community safety and community planning sectors in Scotland

I’m sure you will welcome Lorraine as she begins this role and I hope you agree that this is a very exciting time to be a member of SCSN.  We undoubtedly have the support of the Scottish Government and members are encouraged to play an active role in the coming months as we enter a new period of development and growth. The Directors and staff are looking forward to continuing supporting our partners and members and welcome your feedback and reflections on these plans and the future.

©SCSN November 2017

[1] http://www.safer-communities-scotland.local/2017/10/10/annual-report-and-accounts-for-2016-2017/