This post was first published by Croydon BID
Business led police initiative paying dividends
For over 10 years, Croydon BID has been committed to investing in your safety, spending in excess of £2.73m on a range of initiatives designed to reduce anti-social behaviour (ASB) and crime across the town centre.
Since Monday 3rd June 2019, this new initiative has been run as a 3 month pilot scheme.The aims of the new partnership were, in essence, to focus on reducing business related crime and ASB while supporting intelligence sharing across the business community.
In the last 8 weeks, Croydon BID has funded 336 additional hours of overtime activities that have focussed solely on the town centre. The additional overtime provides extra resource across three days per week; Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. This initiative covers not only the day time economy but the early evening too.
As well as the positive effects of increased policing and visibility on reducing the crime rate, there have also been 21 arrests, 32 Stop & Searches and 105 business engagement visits conducted by local officers.
The six targeted operations that are being carried out across the three month period are focussed on the key safety and security issues affecting our business community such ASB, shoplifting and youth engagement. Each operation consists of at least six officers with the sole intention of focusing on the issues that are a priority to many of the town centre businesses.
Sergeant Yohann Sunderam said:
“Working in partnership with the business community is delivering results for the town centre. By continuing to work closely with Croydon BID, we plan to build on the early successes, offering the reassurance required for all those that use the town centre. A major part of this initiative is the collaborative response, not just from Croydon BID, but from the wider business community. By working together in this way, we can reduce the very serious impact of crime on our streets.”
Prolific offenders within the town centre have formed a particular focus for the initiative, and the additional police presence has provided a visible deterrent to them. The new initiative also offers the opportunity to focus on a particular issue such as shoplifting in co-ordinated, structured operations led by the local police force. Such operations have also included the end of term summer school holiday operation, which saw the town centre supported with 20 officers on patrol between 1.00pm and 7.00pm. The initiative is working with all partners, including Croydon Council and youth engagement teams, to provide the essential short, medium and long term support where required.
Rebecca Molloy, Business Crime and Safety Manager, says,
“It is reassuring to see the positive results the operations and additional hours have had so far for our town centre businesses. As well as the current anecdotal evidence from security staff and businesses of a reduction in crime, the police are also reporting good results on a weekly basis.”
Croydon BID and the Met Police will continue to collaborate, working on the challenges faced by businesses in the town centre as part of the second phase of this initiative. Most important of all is the feedback and intelligence provided by businesses which will ultimately dictate how this initiative will evolve.
Croydon BID will continue to keep businesses informed with a top-line, weekly summary of results from the Met police partnership. These results will be made available online.