National priority – Cohesion and Integration

Community cohesion describes the ability of all communities to function and grow in harmony with one another and includes inter- and intra-community cohesion. It ensures that, where harm occurs, it is recognised and responded to appropriately, ensuring that strong and positive relationships exist and continue to develop. It also allows for specific needs to be identified and addressed effectively in a coordinated and cooperative response.  You can read more here: Integrated Communities Action Plan, Resources, Integrated Communities’ Programme  

 The Portsmouth Community Cohesion group

In 2018 the Portsmouth Community Cohesion group expanded its membership in order to ensure that community cohesion is led and shaped by the communities represented in Portsmouth. The group is coordinated by Portsmouth City Council and Hampshire Constabulary, in partnership with other agencies and reports to the Portsmouth Health and Wellbeing Board.

Aims

Our local group aims to support the ongoing development of a cohesive city where people feel confident they belong and diversity is embraced and valued.  The increased cohesion will contribute to the reduction of the prevalence of harms that impact upon community cohesion such as hate crimes, discrimination, exploitation, extremism and radicalisation. In order to do this, we will build strong relationships between the local community and statutory agencies, and ensure that community voices are heard and responded to.

Purpose of the Portsmouth Community Cohesion Group

  • To listen to the wider community and partner agencies in order to gain an improved understanding of community cohesion and related harms.
  • To work in partnership to reduce the prevalence/risk of harms impacting upon community cohesion, for example; hate crimes, discriminatory practices, radicalisation and exploitation, and address the needs and concerns raised by communities.
  • To develop and implement a community cohesion strategy for Portsmouth.
  • To take a long term approach to building relationships with partner agencies and members of the community in order to inform the group’s activity.
  • To convey key messages to the community in order to amplify positive narratives and build resilience to harmful narratives.
  •  To act as a communicator between communities and partner agencies.

Please get in touch with Freida M’Cormack if you would like more information or would like to get involved with the Community Cohesion Group.