Exciting New Safety Initiatives Launch In Newcastle

Local businesses within Newcastle recently received some important information from the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) and Newry, Mourne and Down Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) regarding two new and exciting Safety initiatives.

The PSNI’s Free ‘Safe Shop Scheme’ is being offered to businesses, not only in Newcastle, but throughout the Council district. This innovative scheme provides retail staff with support and techniques when dealing with incidents of shop theft. Bespoke training packages are tailored specifically to each business at no cost other than the release of staff for a short period of time to undertake their training.

[caption id="attachment_60092" align="aligncenter" width="540"]Katrina Hynds, PCSP, Margaret Quinn, Economic Development, Tom Young, PSNI, Michael Hill R HIll & Company, Paula McClelland Gordons Chemist, Andrew Freeburn PSNI, Siobhan Fearon PCSP, Julie Moore, Crime Prevention Unit, Natasha Smyth Economic Development Katrina Hynds, PCSP officer; Margaret Quinn, Council Project Development Manager; Tom Young, PSNI; Michael Hill R HIll & Company, Paula McClelland, Gordons Chemist; Andrew Freeburn, PSNI; Siobhan Fearon, PCSP officer, Julie Moore, PSNI Crime Prevention Unit;  and Natasha Smyth, Council Economic Development Officer. [/caption]

In order to accommodate business owners, training can be delivered outside of trading hours and provides staff with information on the techniques and methods that shoplifters use and also outlines the law and any associated requirements that should be considered when handling detections.

The Scheme, which already exists in other Council areas, has proven very successful and has led to a dramatic increase in the detection and prosecution of prolific shoplifters.

The scheme enhances Newcastle’s bid for `Purple Flag Accreditation’ help to attract visitors to a town that has a safer and improved night time environment. Purple Flag is an accreditation scheme that recognises excellence in the management of town and city centres at night.

Entertainment areas that achieve the standard will benefit from an improved, safer venue and the town will attract a reputation that offers ‘a better night out’ to visitors. This project is being led by the Newry, Mourne & Down PCSP in conjunction with the business community and interested parties.

Councillor Mickey Larkin, Chair of Newry Mourne & Down PCSP said: “These are two excellent schemes available within the District that will help promote the safety of the public, make Newcastle a more appealing place to visit which will in turn increase tourism and economic growth.

“I believe Newcastle businesses will see the advantages of signing up to the free of charge Safe Shop Scheme and wil appreciate the obvious benefits of decreasing anti-social behaviour and making Newcastle a safer place to visit that Purple Flag Status would bring.

“The city of Newry has had Purple Flag Accreditation since 2014 and the rewards have been notable, resulting in a city that is entertaining, diverse, safe and offers an enjoyable destination for people to work and relax.

“I would encourage all Newcastle businesses to follow the lead of Newry and pledge their support to the initiatives outlined above.”