Staffordshire’s rural community is being urged to make its voice heard, by the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office.
Sue Arnold, Staffordshire’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner, is calling on businesses and residents to speak out by completing the 2018 National Rural Crime Survey.
The most recent survey, from three years ago, revealed the huge cost of crime to rural communities – both financial, at £800m per year, and fear, with ‘chronic under-reporting, anger and frustration’ at the police and Government.
The National Rural Crime Network produced a series of recommendations and the police took steps to improve matters.
So, now, we want to know what has changed?
Do you think rural crime has gone up or down in Staffordshire? Do you feel safer? What’s your view of the police in your community?
In short, we want to know the true picture of crime and anti-social behaviour in rural communities across the county – and the impact it has where you live or work.
Questions cover a range of issues – from whether you report crimes you or your business suffer, to the impact crime and anti-social behaviour has on you and your area, and whether you believe enough is done to catch those who carry out the offences.
It’s all about making sure the voice of rural communities is heard by those who can make a difference to where we live and work – from the Police to Government.
The survey is now available at nationalruralcrimenetwork.net and is open for submissions until Sunday 10 June.
Mrs Arnold, who is the representative for Staffordshire on the NRCN, is calling upon residents and businesses to spare a minute by completing the survey.
The DPCC said: ‘Staffordshire has vast areas of rural and agricultural land.
‘We are compiling this national survey to give us a national picture but also how we can devolve local, county strategies towards this issue.
‘I live and work in the rural community and have done for the last 18 years so I am well aware of the unique challenges that face our communities on a daily basis. I would therefore urge you to spare a few minutes to fill out this survey.
‘It will provide a clear picture of what has improved, what challenges remain and what more government, police forces and organisations can do to support the most isolated parts of the county.’
One of this year’s focuses is whether rural crime continues to be underreported.
Three years ago, one in four said they didn’t report the last crime they’d been a victim of because they didn’t see the point.
The NRCN brings together Police and Crime Commissioners, police forces and organisations that play a key role in rural communities – like the Country Land and Business Association, the National Farmers Union, Neighbourhood Watch, Crimestoppers, Historic England and the Countryside Alliance..