Safer Caledonian – What is it? – Do you want it? – Is it worth it?

Safer_neighbourhoods_team copyAs someone who regularly attends the local Caledonian Ward Safer Neighbourhoods Panel meetings, I'm often frustrated by how few folks usually turn up.

This surprises me since1) the meeting is actually Chaired by our local Councillor Paul Convery, (so there is a good likelihood of things actually getting done as we have our elected official present), 2) the local Safer Neighbourhood's Police Team is always present and 3) given local "concerns" about the levels of crime and anti-social behaviour, one would have thought this would have been THE meeting to attend.  After all, this panel is actually charged with providing direction to our local Safer Neighbourhoods' Team.  And this input comes from those that attend!!!!

In attending these meeting, one cannot help but appreciate the efforts of our local Safer Neighbourhood's Team.  Sure, we all would like there to be twice as many on the Team, but for the time being, I can tell you that the group that we do have is committed to making a difference to the local area.

It is for this very reason, I am writing this piece.  Today, while waiting for a doctor's appointment at Killick Street, I happened to come across a flyer about the Team and their activities.  Activities and information everyone should know about.  Frankly, I was a bit surprised.  Why would whomever distributed this flyer, not send one to the Bulletin Board for distribution – after all we now have a readership of over 150 local residents.  Well, unfortunately whoever does this, did not – so I have scanned it and provided it here – Download Safer_Caledonian.  I hope you will all take a look at it.  Check out the names of the members of our Team, and when you see them on the street, stop and say hello – and introduce yourself.  (yes, yes, I know this is a very American "thing," but humour me!)

Also, what about the publication itself.  Is it providing the info you want to know about…if not, what do you want to hear about from the Team.  (We do believe some form of regular communication is needed.  However what it communicates, should be based on what folks want to know – so please have a think.)  How should this communication reach people?  Would you want to get an email once a month?  Should we simply post it here?  Should they send one to you thru the post?  (I hope not…way tooooo expensive.)

Please register your comments below.  I know Councillor Convery reads this and I am sure he will now be raising the issue at our next meeting.

Andyes, why not plan to ATTEND the next meeting.  The upcoming schedule is as follows: 26 March, 28 May, 30 July, 24 Sept, 26 November.  The meetings usually take place in the basement of The Blessed Sacrament Church on Copenhagen Street (Courtesy of Father Jim Kennedy) and usually begin at 7PM.

If you wish to be added to the mailing list, just drop me a line with your email address and I will pass it on to the Panel's volumtary Secretary Jennifer C. – email it to

Hope to see you at the next meeting, AND to read your comments about the flyer.

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1 Response to Safer Caledonian – What is it? – Do you want it? – Is it worth it?

  1. Sara McGrail says:

    Well page 1 might have an impact – as a prime reason for any community safety communique should be to reduce the gap between the fear of crime and actual levels of crime.

    The use of ASBOs to deal with what is described as the problem of youth “congregating” on the Benerton estate is highlighted on page 2 and fails to mention that this is a costly and ineffective measure likely to create more problems with and for young people.

    On page three young people are being encouraged to identify what would make the area feel safer to them. One would expect it to be at least in part the absence of people threatening them with ASBO’s. This approach is more encouraging, however the focus on young people attending schools and youth clubs probably misses out the group most likely to find themselves involved in the criminal justice system or victims of crime, which is young people who are not engaging with mainstream activities.

    The overall tone is pretty negative about young people and the area. Personally i don’t think its very useful.

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