Let's be having brew: join us for a Coffee with Cops
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No matter what your drink of choice, why not take up an invitation for a Coffee with Cops where you can talk to us about local issues which matter to you?
All our community policing teams advertise Coffee with Cops sessions across their districts on their district Facebook page.
And these events are a great chance for you to ask what we are doing about local concerns raised by residents and businesses; to tell us about problems in your neighbourhood; and to get crime prevention advice.
Basildon District Commander Chief Inspector Dan McHugh explains that Coffee with Cops is valuable for everyone who attends.
“Coffee with Cops events work because we make ourselves available to people where they are. We know it can be intimidating for some members of our community to walk into a police station. “Coffee with Cops means they don’t have to but they can still talk to our community policing team in a friendly, welcoming atmosphere about any crime and anti-social behaviour in their neighbourhood or things which concern them. “And we get valuable information from the public which we use to identify issues and rising crime trends. This enables us to focus our operational activity on areas which require our attention, this may include high-visibility patrols or plain-clothes operations. You don’t have to spill the beans but, if you want to, we’re here to listen. “We’ll work with partner agencies and community organisations to provide local solutions to local issues, such as anti-social behaviour, neighbour disputes and fly-tipping.”
In the Basildon District, most of this work is done through the Safer Basildon community safety partnership, and often staff member organisations – Basildon Council, Essex County Council, Essex Fire and Rescue Service, The Probation Service, NHS Basildon and Brentwood Clinical Commissioning Group - will attend.
Police community support officers Daniel Brady and Kyli Nice organise and attend the Coffee with Cops events in the Basildon and Laindon area.
“Coffee with Cops is such a great asset and provides us with an opportunity to give people advice and to reassure them while it’s also a chance for the public to come along and meet the team serving their community. “We visited one woman who had just lost her husband and was very lonely. I told her about Coffee with Cops and she attended the next one. She was overwhelmed with joy because she had someone to talk to – that really made my day.” PCSO Daniel Brady
The duo have worked hard to identify slightly more unusual meeting places so they can reach all sections of the community.
“We have had some fantastic turnouts at our events, I think locations are key and the concept enables people to open up easier in a more natural environment.” PCSO Kyli Nice
But it’s not just about chatting and exchanging information. At one event, Kylie was approached by a woman at high risk of domestic abuse who asked her for help.
Kyli took her to a quiet place, listened and then arranged for her to be taken to a place of safety where she was able to speak to specialist domestic abuse investigation officers.
They hold similar, closed events for some community groups, such as after-school and holiday clubs, Basildon Islamic Community Centre, Basildon Homeless Family Service in Arne Court, the Helping Hands Food Bank in Lee Chapel North, the Royal British Legion in Laindon and Mahamevnawa International Meditation Centre in Billericay
You may also find them at ‘pop-up’ events in open spaces, such as parks – when the weather is nice, of course!
And they visit residential care homes for the elderly and over-50s clubs where they give crime prevention talks and hand out crime prevention materials, such as panic and window alarms.
Spilling the beans
If you see something which you feel needs police attention, or you have information about a crime, anti-social behaviour or criminal activity, ring 999 if it is an emergency or a crime in progress, otherwise you can report it online where you can also speak to an online Live Chat operator on weekdays between 10am and 9pm. Alternatively, you can ring 101.
You can also contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, online or by calling 0800 555 111.
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