• Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner for Cambridge

Still time to have your say on rural policing, says Commissioner

June 18th, 2015

Cambridgeshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Sir Graham Bright today (Thursday) urged countryside residents there was still time to have their say as the largest-ever rural crime survey approaches its deadline.

The survey is being conducted by the National Rural Crime Network (NRCN) – a multiagency think tank that champions a better understanding of rural crime and delivers effective ways to keep rural communities safer.

The aim of the NRCN’s research is to consult rural residents and workers across England, Wales and Northern Ireland about community policing, the impact crime and ASB has on their lives and how the response to rural crime could be improved.

The survey, which can be completed at www.nationalruralcrimenetwork.net/survey, is open until Wednesday, June 24.

Sir Graham is keen to remind residents that they don’t need to have been a victim of crime to complete the survey – everyone who lives or works in the countryside is invited to provide feedback which will be invaluable to future reform of rural policing.

“I’m very enthusiastic about this survey which will bring unprecedented attention to the plight of rural residents and businesses in the face of crime,” he said.

“Any crime that happens in an urban area can, and does, occur in a rural area too however rural residents often feel more vulnerable regardless of whether or not the risks are real.

“Cambridgeshire remains a very safe place to live but we are not immune to the problems affecting other rural counties and there are very specific rural safety challenges that need to be addressed. It is vital we understand how we can make rural communities feel safer and what is needed to deliver a better service. This survey is a significant step in achieving this and I urge those who’ve not yet contributed their views to do so before next week’s deadline.”

The survey has already attracted more than 11,000 responses.

Chair of the NRCN, Julia Mulligan, who is also North Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, commented: “We commissioned this survey to help build a more comprehensive picture of what a widespread but often misunderstood issue countryside crime can be and it is important that as many people as possible have their say on this matter in order to inform future policing resources. Too often, crimes in rural areas go unreported which can lead to under resourcing and lack of confidence in local forces.

“You certainly don’t need to have been a victim of crime to have a view on how the police operate. You may be concerned about police visibility or response, see incidents that go unreported, or you may have a local officer who is engaged and proactive. Whatever your view, we want to hear from you.”

The National Rural Crime Network (NRCN) is supported by 30 Police and Crime Commissioners and police forces across England and Wales. The Network, established in July 2014, includes a wide range of organisations with an interest in community safety and rural affairs such as the National Farmers Union, Historic England, Neighbourhood Watch and Crimestoppers.

For more information on the NRCN visit: www.nationalruralcrimenetwork.net

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