Police and Trading Standards to launch Lincolnshire doorstep crime reduction campaign

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Lincolnshire Trading Standards, Lincolnshire Police and Community Lincs have launched an initiative to reduce doorstep crime.

Operation REPEAT (Reinforcing Elderly People’s Education At all Times) will train professionals and carers of elderly people in what to look for and the advice they should be giving if they think someone is a victim of doorstep crime.

Lisa Foster, Principal Trading Standards Officer, said: “Doorstep crime can affect anyone, but most often it is the elderly and vulnerable who are targeted.

“The rogue traders can be very persuasive and convincing in their approach and it can be very distressing and frightening for an elderly or vulnerable person who is unaware of how to protect themselves.

“Working closely with our partners, we have developed several initiatives to assist and support residents from becoming a victim of doorstep crime.”

Sgt Caroline Broughton, Lincolnshire Police, added: “Carers are in a unique position in helping prevent the person they look after from becoming a victim of bogus callers by passing on some common sense tips.

“They are ideally placed to query if anything unusual has happened since their last visit and encouraging them to report anything suspicious.

“They can also remind them to practice good doorstep behaviour by keeping doors locked and putting the door chain on before answering it.”

The project is initialy being piloted in the South Kesteven District for six months, but organisers hope it can be extended to other parts of the county next year.

The training is focused around bogus callers, rogue traders, distraction burglaries and scam mail.

It includes an awareness of what to look out for when visiting someone in their home and how to spot early signs of potential issues. They are also told how to tackle the issue and who they can turn to for support and guidance.

The campaign has been launched to coincide with National Consumer Week, and is funded by Lincolnshire Trading Standards and working in partnership with Lincolnshire Police and Community Lincs.