The reality is that drug-related harm has a devastating impact to victims, families and the wider community.
Our focus is on preventing the exploitation of vulnerable people and children by organised crime groups (OCGs), to disrupt county line activity and reduce drug related violence.
Working closely with support services and agencies is vital when tackling drug related harm.
Project ADDER is a government initiative to tackle drug related issues in Hastings, which stands for Addiction, Diversion, Disruption, Enforcement and Recovery.
It sees us working in partnership with East Sussex County Council and health services to target local gang leaders driving the drugs trade while better helping people to recover from addictions.
Our work includes:
Supporting council led campaign activity, raising awareness of Project ADDER and signs of exploitation plus signposting to support services through prevention messaging and operational activity such as days of action.
Developing a Sussex Police led campaign targeting young people in Hastings, raising awareness among 14-year olds and above of the personal implications and consequences of drug-related activity. The campaign will look to increase awareness of drug exploitation and educate on drug use.
Seeking support from secondary schools and colleges, as well as health agencies and youth community groups in Hastings to distribute and share campaign material and key messages.
Carrying out enhanced and targeted enforcement and diversionary activities throughout the year.
Creating a dedicated Project ADDER team, which comprises of two investigators, a financial intelligence officer and digital forensic examiner to identify how networks are operating and expanding.
Working with young people through engagement and education, raising awareness of exploitation, where they can find advice and support and how to report any concerns.
Since 2014, It’s a Penalty has been working to prevent abuse, exploitation and human trafficking worldwide. They are one of many organisations who, through education, awareness- raising, advocacy, collaboration and partnership with strategic stakeholders, aim to eradicate abuse, exploitation and human trafficking, creating a world where it is no longer acceptable.
In partnership with Sussex Police, It’s a Penalty has created an informative film on county lines in the UK - a complex crime that is often misunderstood. The film outlines what county lines is, how young people become exploited by organised crime networks and the difficulties they face once they have been targeted.
Further advice and guidance
Find further advice on how to spot the signs of exploitation on our County Lines page.