23/03/2005

Lock out crime scheme reaches 1000 homes

Criminal Justice Minister John Spellar today announced the expansion of the Government’s Lock Out Crime Scheme when he visited the Belfast home of the one thousandth recipient.

The initiative, which is now being extended across Northern Ireland, provides and installs home security measures free of charge, for those over 75 years, living in high crime areas and in receipt of certain benefits.

Mr Spellar said: “I encourage all eligible people to take up the offer of free security improvements for their homes. To date, more than 13,000 eligible older people have been invited to participate. We are working hard to make sure that those most in need can benefit from the scheme and to increase the current take up rate, currently at 30%.

“Carrickfergus and Armagh will be the first Council areas to be targeted in this next phase of the roll out, following work already completed in year one of the programme. By the completion of the scheme we expect that over 10,000 homes will have additional security measures installed, giving older people more confidence and protection in their own homes."

The Lock Out Crime Scheme ( LOCS ) is the major component in the Government’s Stay Safe Stay Secure campaign, aimed at helping older people to feel safer within the community.

(MB/SP)

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