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Migration and Home Affairs

The Danish SSP system: Local collaboration between schools, social service and police

Target Audience
key themes association
Community engagement/civil societyMulti-agency cooperation
Peer Reviewed practice


The organisational structure

The SSP collaboration is organized on 3 levels:

  • The political-strategic level
  • The coordinating level
  • The implementing level

The political-strategic level includes representatives from the highest rank of police together with mayors from the municipalities and other strategic partners on the regional-local level. On this level, the annual strategies and action plans for the cross-sectional and interdisciplinary collaboration are decided.

The coordinating level is organized in local councils consisting of leading persons/coordinators from the municipal authorities and local police. The local councils are responsible for the implementation of the overall strategies and action plans. Special SSP-consultants are appointed as the bridge builders between the coordinating and implementing level.

The implementing level consists of local professionals from schools, police, street workers, social workers, social housing workers etc. – meeting in close networks on a very regular basis to coordinate the practical preventive actions in the local area.

Type of Organisation: Other

Project description

The origins and effort: The Danish SSP collaborative system organizes the local and municipal crime preventive efforts towards children and adolescents. This may also include families.

SSP-system was originally established in 1977 when the Danish Crime Prevention Council appointed the Central SSP committee. Nowadays, the vast majority of local authorities have established the SSP collaboration, which may be organized differently in the municipalities.

The three units: School , Social Services and Police cooperate in the SSP-system, while these bodies in particular are responsible for children and young people's well-being and upbringing. Furthermore, both the school system, the social system and the police are by Danish Legislation required to carry out crime prevention in the broadest sense.

The SSP system has in recent years been supplemented by new similar cross-sectional and interdisciplinary structures like:

  • The PSP system: collaboration between Police, Social services and Psychiatry.
  • The SSD-system: collaboration between Social services, School, healthcare and Daycare.
  • The SSP+: the local SSP collaboration expanded to youngsters in the age from 18-25.

The aim and practical objectives of the SSP system: SSP collaboration aims at identifying risk factors and reasons behind delinquency and crimes committed by children and youngsters and furthermore, to process these causal factors in a preventive perspective. This also includes the attention and support of protective factors in the youngster's daily life and environments.

The basic idea of the SSP collaboration system is that the quality of crime prevention work is strengthened by the sharing of information between the professions. Thus, the interdisciplinary collaboration strengthens the awareness of risk signs and risk factors in the daily life of children and adolescents at risk, thereby also improving the opportunities to act preventive or even interventive on such signs and factors in a preventive action.

Thus, the objectives of the SSP collaboration is to build, operate and maintain a local network with an efficient crime preventive impact on children and young people's everyday life.

This is done through 3 focus areas in the collaboration:

  • The general preventive action
  • The specific effort
  • The individual-oriented effort


The general preventive action: In practice, the general preventive action is targeted groups of youngsters, in which there has been no evidence of criminal behavior. On this level of action, the SSP means are, in general, attitudinal lessons in schools and youth club. It may also be more recreational actions such as sports and other leisure activities, homework support, leisure centres in vulnerable residential areas, involvement of families etc.

The specific effort: On the level of specific efforts, the SSP collaboration is especially targeting children and young people at odds with the law or showing signs of neglect. Apart from the general means of preventive actions, the specific efforts may also include special projects, enhancing the possibilities for developing and testing targeted methods that may provide new good practice.

The individual-oriented effort: These efforts are targeting children and young people who already have committed crimes. The goal is to prevent them from continuing along the crime road, often through special treatment measures . On of the methods used may be home visits in order to form an impression of the environments. Thus, there may be established a family-based plan for the further preventive process. Overall, the individual-orientered efforts can be described as recidiv-prevention.

The SSP role in the fight against radicalisation and extremism: The SSP system plays a central role in the general efforts against radicalisation and extremism among young people in Denmark. All over the country, the local SSP councils and implementation networks have been trained in the spotting and handling risk signs of radicalisation and youngster's attachment to extremist ideas and groups etc. Also, the SSP-system has played a central part as partner in special projects and other initiatives in the Governmental Action plans against radicalisation and extremism.

Contact details

RAN Secretariat: Email

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The Danish SSP system Local collaboration between schools, social services and police
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