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College Community Liaison Officer awarded Police Commendation

Posted on 09/12/2010

Helen, in the centre, has been awarded for her commitment to community relations

Helen Groenendaal, Community Liaison Officer at Royal Holloway, University of London, received a Surrey Police Neighbourhood Command Commendation for ‘commitment and dedication to resolving ongoing incidents of anti-social behaviour in Egham’.

Helen received this award alongside Sergeant Iain Weaving, PC Richard Parke from Surrey Police and Aileen Baker and Graeme Cooke from Runnymede Borough Council.

Responding to complaints from both student and non-student residents in an area of Egham, Helen has worked in partnership with the others to deal with incidents of anti-social behaviour, predominantly concerning excessive noise.

Together, they devised a strategy to deal with a small group of student residents who were behaving unreasonably and working shifts they patrolled the area until the early hours of the morning, visited complainants and those causing problems within the neighbourhood and closely monitored incidents of anti-social behaviour. Students were also spoken to repeatedly at the College regarding the potential disciplinary consequences if their behaviour did not improve.

Helen says: “This award is a good recognition of the close partnership that has been forged between the Community Liaison and Support Office, Surrey Police Safer Neighbourhood Teams and Runnymede Borough Council Environmental Protection and the joint-agency work undertaken to support students whilst addressing the small number of students who cause disturbance in the local community and is also testimony to the College’s continued commitment to community relations.” 

Christopher Butler, Head of Support and Advisory Services, said: “As part of building up an excellent Community Liaison and Support Office, which I know is considered a centre of good practice by other institutions, Helen has created a strong co-operative partnership with the Police and the Local Authority. Together they do an excellent job of looking out for our students’ interest locally while ensuring the very occasional students who persist in behaving irresponsibly are encouraged to improve and – failing this – are carefully and fairly disciplined.”




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