Thurrock Council's Cabinet has approved plans to take a public health approach to tackling the issue of youth and gang violence in the borough.
The approach will see this type of violence – most usually associated with gang crime and county-line drug dealing operations – tackled in the same way as an infectious disease, through prevention, intervention and recovery.
Cllr Allen Mayes, Cabinet member for health, said: "Youth violence is a blight on a great many lives. It negatively affects victims, perpetrators and those who have to live in neighbourhoods where this crime is committed.
"This is an innovative approach which brings together ideas which we have seen work successfully in Glasgow to reduce knife crime. By treating it as we would a disease, we can more effectively bring agencies together to take a whole system approach to tackling the issue."
Cllr James Halden, Cabinet member for children and adult social care said: "We will use data to establish who is at greatest risk and intervene to prevent this type of crime happening in the first place – while at the same time treating those directly affected to help them recover from their experiences.
"This new approach will help co-ordinate multi-agency activity in Thurrock and produce better outcomes for all who are affected by youth violence."
To read the full report, go to Cabinet agenda, Wednesday 16 September.