Moving Forward+ with CashBack for Communities helps young people realise their potential by reducing social isolation, and building confidence and resilience before supporting onward transition to positive destinations. The programme reaches autistic young people who are most at risk of entering the justice system.
Since the outset of Moving Forward+ with CashBack for Communities in 2017, the team have embraced opportunities to work with Police Scotland for the benefit of autistic young people. Participants have attended presentations by Police Scotland’s Safer Communities team, outlining the role of Police Scotland and its various teams, highlighting steps that young people can take to keep safe when out and about in their local communities and city centers.
Learning more about the police and any worries I had should I become a victim of crime were eased.Young person
Officers from Police Scotland’s Cybercrime Harm Prevention and Children and Young People teams have also provided the young people with fascinating insights into the tactics used by criminals involved in cybercrime and county lines activity.
I found it really interesting and helpful as it’s always good to know what to do if you’re in trouble.Young Person
In addition to raising awareness of ways in which criminals might attempt to draw them into illegal activity or manipulate them for their own gain, this engagement has helped participants, many of whom reside in the communities most likely to be impacted by crime, to have a very positive view of Police Scotland.
This year, the Moving Forward+ with CashBack team were approached by Police Scotland’s Positive Action (Recruitment) team. They were keen to adapt their procedures to encourage more applications from Scotland’s neuro diverse communities and we were delighted to provide feedback on the recruitment portal, in terms of how that could be more accessible for autistic candidates. During these discussions, the Moving Forward+ with CashBack team learned more about the diverse range of careers available within Police Scotland and were excited when Inspector Claire MacConnell (below) suggested an online event to highlight these opportunities and the recruitment processes involved.
The event, which took place on 25th October, offered an autism friendly format for Moving Forward+ with CashBack participants to find out more about the various roles available within Police Scotland and to hear from serving officers, some of whom are themselves from neuro diverse backgrounds.
Inspector Claire MacConnell
This was Police Scotland’s first ever recruitment event designed specifically for Neuro Diverse individuals, it was a fantastic opportunity for us to showcase the various roles and career paths available right across Scotland. The focus of the event was firmly on the strengths of Neuro Diverse individuals and what they can bring to Police Scotland. Serving officers spoke about their own lived experience and representatives from the Scottish Police Disability and Carers Association also spoke. A positive and inclusive event that will be something we will absolutely deliver again in the coming months, it was a real privilege to have been a part of it.
It was inspirational to hear the journeys that the serving Police staff had undertaken and that will encourage me to apply for a job with Police Scotland in the future knowing that support is available.Young person
As well as highlighting potential career paths for some, this event has again provided our young people with a very positive interaction with Police Scotland.Jim Doherty, Moving Forward+ with CashBack manager