Better Contacts is a key partnership project between the London Borough of Sutton and the London Fire Brigade (LFB) which sits under the Sutton Plan.

The objective of Better Contacts is to maximise the contact time that LFB have with vulnerable residents in Sutton, in order to provide more preventative support to that cohort.

This contact time occurs in the form of Home Fire Safety Visits, which are available to any Sutton resident, but more specifically those who are vulnerable and at a greater risk.

The council is providing training to the LFB to enable service men and women to carry out brief assessments with residents and make referrals back to the council and other specialist services when required. The training covers the issues of safeguarding and substance misuse, with an emphasis on early identification and referral pathways. The aim is to roll this initiative out across the entire fire brigade within Sutton.

The project also covers a range of other partnership activities including:

  • processes to increase the number of targeted referrals made from the council and GPs to LFB
  • dissemination of smoke alarms to vulnerable residents
  • information sharing, to enable more targeted home fire safety visits
  • local committee involvement
  • community Safety Investment Fund – bids for capital funding
  • LFB officers to join the mentoring programme
  • sharing space

Here you can find out more about and request a Home Fire Safety Visit.