The Scottish Violence Reduction Unit hosted a section of the Strategic Command Course (Most Senior Policing Course in the UK) in February. In support of the potential learning on this course, Circle’s FABI and Harbour Teams were delighted to facilitate shadowing visits for four candidates on the course. The aim of the course was for candidates to explore the concept of partnership and what this means to Police Scotland. The value of providing shadowing visits with our families, who are the most affected by decision making, was that the candidates were given an opportunity to reflect upon how policing practices actually impact on people. Five family support workers accompanied the candidates on visits to eight families whom we work alongside. The impact of these visits was powerful, with candidates being profoundly influenced by their experiences of spending time with the families and the workers who support them: “people were hugely moved, angry about the level of demand that you still have in 2016 – in awe of your team who give so selflessly, and the service users who overturned all the pre-conceptions that they had about addiction, poverty and supporting families.”

Circle would like to thank the candidates for their sensitivity in meeting with families and listening to their experiences, whilst demonstrating questioning mindset with workers in enhancing their knowledge of the issues affecting the families we work alongside.  Most importantly, we send our thanks to the families who participated in these visits – their openness and honesty to share their experiences is greatly appreciated.