In 2001 an initiative was trialled in South Lincolnshire to combat a high rise in Doorstep Crime. We visited 21 victims of such crimes for an hour each week over a 6 month period, and information and advice on how the criminals worked and how to keep safe, was drip fed into general conversation. Over that time period we became trusted persons and the victims listened and took on board what was said. Eventually, test door knockers were sent to the victim’s doors. Success, no one was given entry and no verbal engagement took place. The only problem, we did not have the capacity to sustain the initiative.
Several years later, the initiative was re-visited, but instead of police officers attempting to deliver the valuable crime prevention messages we at CRE targeted health and social care workers. Those people already working with the older vulnerable members of our communities and already in positions of trust! Indeed a fantastic ‘free’ delivery mechanism.
A training package, based on our knowledge and experience from the initiative in 2001 was developed and Operation REPEAT was born. Following discussion with Lincolnshire County Council Safer Communities Partnership (Trading Standards and Police) a 6 month pilot project commenced in November 2012 focusing on South Lincolnshire. The pilot proved so successful that funding was given to extend the training sessions across the whole county.
The chief aim of Operation REPEAT is to raise awareness of Doorstep Crime and Scam offences to members of the public who are in that vulnerable position of becoming / are already targets of criminals who trade in this manner.
Our package covers all aspects of Doorstep Crime and Scams, from bogus officials, distraction burglary, criminal (rogue) traders, telephone scams, cyber crime and Mass Marketing Fraud (mail scams). The training session enables you to be more knowledgeable about such crimes, how there is a foodchain of criminality, how details are sold on between teams, to what lengths criminals will go to exploit vulnerable people and how all of this is going on under people’s noses without them even being aware.
The Wellbeing Team
Operation REPEAT is delivered as a structured programme of training sessions to Health and Social Care staff, including volunteers, support workers, carers and professionals, people that are trusted, who have individual contact on a regular basis with members of the local community. Health and Social Care professionals are some of the best placed people to monitor those at risk, as research suggests 80% of all such victims are already in receipt of health and social care services.
Training is presented over a 3 hour session to groups of 10-20 people with special emphasis placed on the ‘one to one’ approach that is so valuable in delivering the key Doorstep Crime and Scam Awareness messages.
Delivered by a small dedicated team, Operation REPEAT trainers are in a very unique position, keeping the integrity of the project sound with no mission drift that can occur via cascading or snowballing of information. Our personal work experience allowed us to see the devastating effect these type of offences has on numerous victims, having also dealt with offenders themselves and coming from crime prevention and training backgrounds enables an in depth and personal delivery and response to questions without having to resort to information from books or other sources.
And, more importantly, we are able to sustain delivery on your behalf!
East Lindsey District Council
We work with Police Community Safety / Crime Prevention Officers and County Council Trading Standards Teams to deliver Operation REPEAT. Using, where possible, local examples to enhance our presentations, creating networks with the people and organisations we train. Through this network we continue to feed information on the shifting tide of fraud and scams to those that we have already trained but also allow access back to the team for further advice and information should it be required.
Who’s it For?
We have delivered internally to Police officers and staff, to County Council staff including social workers, adult wellbeing teams, AGE UK staff, British Red Cross workers, NHS teams, Bluebird Care, Prestige Care, Mears Care, Bloomsbury Home Care, Neighbourhood Watch and many more.