Police commissioner’s pledge in South Tyneside after New Zealand outrage

Cllr Audrey McMillan with Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird at Ocean Road Community Centre, South Shields.
Cllr Audrey McMillan with Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird at Ocean Road Community Centre, South Shields.

Police chiefs have promised to ensure South Tyneside stays ‘one of the safest places’ in the region follwoing the New Zealand mosque attacks.

The pledge came as Dame Vera Baird, Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, was in South Shields to meet members of the town’s black and minority ethnic community.

She used the event - at the Ocean Road Community Centre - to pledge Northumbria Police would keep working with South Tyneside Council and other community groups.

She said: “I want to express my sorrow at the appalling events in New Zealand, to show my solidarity with you all and to give you assurance that we will continue to do all we can to ensure our area remains tolerant of all faiths and welcomes the rich diversity of our Communities.”

The meeting also discussed planned investment in the borough and policing strategies in South Shields town centre.

Coun Audrey McMillan, chairman of Ocean Road Community Centre, thanked the PCVC for her ‘continuing support at this difficult time’.

Moynal Hussain who attended the event added: “The terrible events in New Zealand mean we all need to be vigilant, but it was good to know that the Police and South Tyneside Council are working closely with the BME community across the Borough.

“We all felt tremendously reassured that the Police Commissioner took time out of her busy schedule to meet with us.”

Dozens were killed when a gunman attacked two mosques in the New Zealand city of Christchurch last month (March).

James Harrison

James Harrison , Local Democracy Reporting Service