30/08/2013

Appeal Launches Over Rural Crime

The Ulster Farmers Union (UFU) has written to all of NI's Policing and Community Safety Partnerships (PSCP) to express concern about rural crime.

The UFU believe more could be done to tackle the issue. It also voiced its concerns about a possible lack of rural representation on some of the partnerships.

UFU Deputy President, Barclay Bell, said: "Rural crime has always been an issue for the UFU due to its impact on rural businesses, the sustainability of these businesses and on local communities. Farmers are taking the rural crime message seriously and have already gone to great lengths to ensuring their livestock, property and belongings are secure.

"However, we do feel that PCSPs could be doing more in helping tackle this important issue. Our concern with PCSPs is that membership may not fully reflect the needs of that area and we question how a PCSP can respond to local issues if this is the case. We want to find out more about what actions are currently being taken by each PCSP across Northern Ireland to make their rural areas safer places and find out more about the rural representation on each PCSP, in particular farmer involvement."

The UFU added that it feels, in order to fully address the issue of rural crime, it is essential that all stakeholders including farmers, rural dwellers, the PSNI and PCSPs, work together on delivering solutions that will help local communities to benefit.

(JP/CD)

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