Local residents have a brand new opportunity to have a say about rural crime in the 2018 National Rural Crime Survey, launched today.
The survey is now available at www.nationalruralcrimenetwork.net and is open until Sunday 10 June 2018.
It is three years since the last National Rural Crime Survey. It highlighted the cost of crime to our rural communities. This cost isn’t just financial, it showed that there can be a greater fear of crime, along with chronic under-reporting as well as anger and frustration at the police and government.
In response to community concerns and the recommendations made by the National Rural Crime Network following the 2015 survey, Ron Hogg Durham Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner worked with the Chief Constable, Mike Barton to produce and implement the Rural Policing Statement. The statement explains how the concerns of residents have been listened to and the steps that have been put into place to improve services to rural communities.
Improvements include the introduction of the Rural Specials Unit, Community Safety Responders, cross-border working, Community SpeedWatch initiatives, an additional police vehicle, additional staff training, use of mobile tablet technology and greater partnership working. All of which contribute to enhancing the services delivered to our rural communities.
Ron Hogg, Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner for County Durham and Darlington said:
“I encourage anyone living or working in a rural community to take a few minutes to complete our survey. By using your voice, you can give us a true picture of crime and anti-social behaviour in our rural communities across county Durham and Darlington. It is important for us to see what has changed since the 2015 survey. It will help to provide a clear picture of what has improved, what challenges remain and what more we can do to make a difference to the lives of those who live and work in our rural communities.
“I will be using the results of the 2018 survey to help me to formulate the next Rural Crime Statement which I plan to publish in the autumn. This will help us to deliver effective, appropriate and efficient services to our Rural Communities. The results will also feed into the National Police Chiefs’ Council’s Rural Affairs National Strategy for 2018-2021 which is also due to be launched later this year.”
The survey is being carried out by the National Rural Crime Network. The organisation brings together Police and Crime Commissioners, police forces and organisations that play a key role in rural communities – like the Country Land and Business Association, the National Farmers Union, Neighbourhood Watch, Crimestoppers, Historic England and the Countryside Alliance.
The Network’s Chair is Julia Mulligan, Police and Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire. She said:
“The aim of the National Rural Crime Network is to see greater recognition and understanding of the problems and impact of crime in rural communities so more can be done to help them be safe – and feel safe. In order to achieve that, we need to know the true picture of crime and anti-social behaviour that residents and businesses face.
“The 2015 findings uncovered some difficult truths for all those involved in protecting rural areas and now is the right time to see whether lessons have been learnt, whether people are more willing to report the crime they are victims of and if they do indeed feel safer.”