Michael joined South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Dr Alan Billings, along with police officers, councillors and officials from BMBC, to meet local residents on a walkabout in Kendray.
As reported in the Barnsley News and Sport and the Barnsley Chronicle, following persistent reports of anti-social behaviour in the Birk Avenue area of Kendray, which led to constituents contacting Michael and local councillors raising their concerns, he went to see first-hand what is being done to tackle the issues. Recent reports have included missile throwing, stopping buses by pressing the emergency buttons and even climbing on the roof at Kendray Hospital and urinating on the entrances.
There has been a multi-agency response to the recent problems and several arrests have been made. Despite large cut backs imposed by central government, Michael was pleased to see Alan Billings restate his commitment to prioritise neighbourhood policing.
Along with local councillors Karen Dyson and Brian Mathers, Michael also paid tribute to local police officers and PCSOs working in the area including Police Sergeant Ian Bailey and PCSOs David Bagshaw and Stewart Kylie.
Commenting, Michael said:
"I am determined that we have a zero-tolerance approach to crime and anti-social behaviour in Kendray and elsewhere in Barnsley. Behaviour of this kind by a handful of individuals will not be tolerated in our community and I whole-heartedly support South Yorkshire Police in taking a strong stance against it. It was great to have the support for our Police and Crime Commissioner.
"The overwhelming majority of the people in the area are law-abiding, decent people and we cannot let a tiny minority cause misery and mayhem for the rest of the community.
"Despite working in incredibly difficult circumstances, including dealing with huge cuts in resources from central government, the police service are doing a fantastic job trying to keep on top of the situation for residents in Kendray".