Saturday, May 25, 2024

Police expand retail crime-prevention programme

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Police are working to prevent aggravated robberies. Times file photo Wayne Martin

Police say work has begun to include small retailers who have been the victim of aggravated robbery in the past year as part of their expanded retail crime-prevention programme from January next year.

“Police understand any incident involving violence is extremely distressing for retailers, their whanau and the wider community,” Assistant Commissioner Chris De Wattignar says.

“The programme has been actively identifying and contacting small retailers who have been the victim of a ram-raid style burglary going back to incidents which occurred in November 2021.

“The team are now working to build a new contact list so staff can contact victims of aggravated robbery and offer them the supply and install of crime prevention products as well.”

De Wattignar says the programme is making “significant progress”, with 131 stores and installations booked, underway, or fully completed by external suppliers.

The programme continues to work to provide small retailers with crime-prevention advice and support to help keep their businesses safe.

To date, 526 security interventions have been approved out of the programme fund.

This includes 107 fog cannons or upgrades, 89 security sirens, 71 alarms, 78 CCTV systems or system upgrades, 57 bollards or similar security measures, 55 roller doors and 69 other interventions that include improved lighting, and strengthened windows, mirrors and counter screens.

De Wattignar says police continue to support communities and retailers to feel safe and be safe.

That work includes engaging with retailers, visiting local dairies, and providing prevention advice such as how to keep themselves safe as well as key tips on store layout, window coverings, and crime prevention products.

“Often these smaller retail shops and dairies provide a key social service and point of connection to each other in the community.

“I would encourage all of us passing by to call in and say hi, to support these members of the community.

“Every time we, not just police officers but all of us as a community, can assist fellow community members to be safe through crime prevention opportunities, we make a difference.”

De Wattignar says police continue to review how staff are deployed, when and where so people may see more officers in certain areas at certain times.

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