Rural Watch Scotland launched
A partnership of Police Scotland, NFU Scotland and Neighbourhood Watch Scotland have launched their Rural Watch Scotland initiative.
'Rural Watch Scotland' is an extension of the Neighbourhood Watch concept and a product of the Scottish Partnership Against Rural Crime (SPARC) designed specifically for the rural communities of Scotland.
The objectives of Rural Watch Scotland are to:
- Reduce crime and the fear of crime by providing the right information, to the right people, at the right time
- Encourage people to think about safety and security for themselves, their neighbours and their community
- Improve community cohesion and well-being
- Work in partnership with national and local service providers to develop more resilient communities that are better prepared against threats, intentional or unintentional, such as crime or extreme weather
Neighbourhood ALERT, a two way messaging system specifically designed in the UK for the purposes of community engagement will play a central role in providing consistent, locally relevant and inclusive communication with people living and working within a rural setting. The last six months has seen the establishment of a local Neighbourhood ALERT administrator network across all areas of Police Scotland.
Rural Watch Scotland encourages people to sign up to receive alerts and advice by email, text or voicemail from local police officers and other approved information providers. Keeping communities informed about crime and other threats in their areas can help prevent crime, keep communities and residents safe, and the response to these alerts can help catch criminals or allow communities to better prepare to deal with local issues.
To sign up to receive local ALERTS users simply click the green JOIN button on the Rural Watch Website – www.ruralwatchscotland.co.uk.
Superintendent Gavin Robertson, who chairs the SPARC Group said: “The availability of a national Rural Watch Alert platform has been one of the main aims of SPARC since it was formed in 2015. I am pleased to see the service come to fruition.
"I am confident that this direct messaging system will benefit rural communities and I urge farmers, foresters, rural businesses and residents as well as those who regularly visit the countryside for leisure activities to sign up to receive relevant information about rural crime in their area. I am grateful for the funding from Neighbourhood Watch Scotland, NFU Scotland and Police Scotland to bring a consistent messaging service to all rural communities across the country.”
*The Scottish Partnership Against Rural Crime (SPARC) is a multi-agency partnership that includes Police Scotland, NFU Scotland, Scottish Land & Estates, Scottish Business Resilience Centre, Scottish Government, NFU Mutual, Crimestoppers, the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service and Neighbourhood Watch Scotland.
Call 101 for non-emergencies and general enquiries, in an emergency call 999. If you have information about a crime you can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.