Lynne Featherstone

MP for Hornsey and Wood Green

my blog
Lynne's Parliament and Haringey Diary, established 2003

Unreported crime

Metropolitan Police Authority full board meeting. I table a report as a Member’s Update on ‘unreported crime’. I have completed a survey in Hornsey & Wood Green on crime in general – and because of my special interest and responsibility for holding the Met to account on police response, I had inserted a section on unreported crime.

My thesis has been that people in quite large numbers don’t bother to report low-level crime because they can’t easily access the police locally, they don’t believe the police will do anything if they do get

hold of them and/or they don’t think the crime important enough to bother the police with.

Given that police resources are targeted on where crime is reported, if my thesis were correct, lots of places that needed police resources would not be getting them for this reason.

Anyway – I needed some evidence to support my theory – hence the survey. The furore at the MPA was fun – though also just the sort of silliness which puts people off politics. The Tories were furious with me for doing it – but did concede that unreported crime was a big issue.

Sir John Stevens (Met Police Commissioner) said I was right in what I was saying and that it was an

important area for the police to focus on.

If people don’t have confidence and trust that the police will act, all the extra police on the streets will not make people feel safer. The Evening Standard ran with it – and the work will now be taken on through a sub-committee to address the issue.

Thu 29 April 2004
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Comments

  1. Dawn Miles says:

    Many people fail to make the connection between not reporting an incident, however ‘low level’, and failure of the police to take things seriously. If it’s not reported, it’s not logged, if it’s not logged, it’s not a statistic, if it’s not a statistic it does not form part of the local policing picture and therefore is not registered as a problem. This is particularly the case with low level ASB behaviour and crime. Local SNT set priorities for their neighbourhood, if they are not informed about the problems then how are they to formulate a response and act?
    Bit of a vicious circle!

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