Release Date: 20/07/2012
Richmond outlines new priorities for community safety
Violence, anti-social behaviour, domestic abuse, burglary, opportunistic theft and management of repeat offenders were named top priorities for this year’s community safety strategy at a Richmond Council cabinet meeting last night (19 July).
Richmond upon Thames has one of the lowest crime rates of any London borough, and is ranked the safest in terms of violent offences and is currently ranked fourth safest in terms of overall crime.
However theft, opportunistic crime and non-residential burglary account for much of the borough’s crime figures, highlighting the importance of residents taking more responsibility for securing their property, such as double-locking bikes and removing valuables from vehicles.
The Council’s All in One survey has shown that some residents are also concerned about town centres as hotspots for crime and alcohol-related issues, although violence in town centres reduced last year.
At last night’s meeting, cabinet members approved this year’s community safety strategy, which not only targets certain types of crime – like anti-social behaviour and theft – but also focuses on key ‘drivers’ of crime such as alcohol and drug use.
Among its top priorities, the Community Safety Partnership will aim to improve communication and knowledge regarding anti-social behaviour, better identify repeat callers who may be at risk and ensure people know how to report concerns.
In terms of tackling burglary and opportunistic theft, the partnership will use a combination of intelligence gathering, prevention and enforcement to target offenders more effectively. Operation Lockout will also aim to increase residents’ awareness of the need for security, as well as providing DNA property marking to deter thieves and Safer Neighbourhood Teams who will continue to work with residents.
The partnership will also continue to target alcohol-related violence and rowdy behaviour in town centres with enhanced police patrols and joint licensing work to boost community confidence and satisfaction.
Cllr Pamela Fleming, Richmond Council’s Strategic Cabinet Member for Community, Business and Culture, said: “In Richmond upon Thames we are lucky to have one of the lowest crime rates in London, but we cannot risk becoming complacent in terms of security. The borough is regarded as an affluent one by other Londoners, including would-be criminals, so we need residents to take responsibility for securing their property – whether that be double-locking their bicycle, or removing valuables when they park their car.”
Richmond upon Thames Borough Commander Clive Chalk added: “Richmond borough is a very safe place to live, work and visit, and the trend for residential burglary has been a reduction for the past 14 years. Unfortunately the increase in theft of property from motor vehicles and pedal cycles has increased the overall figures recently.”
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