In May we commenced a new initiative in our Monthly Bulletin by publishing two crime analysis articles prepared by former police intelligence officers. We asked for feedback from all readers and did a straw poll with our Watch Coordinators. We received 25 responses to the questions:
1. Would you like to see more reports such as this?
2. What other crimes, offences, issues, or topics would you like … from this sort of research?
The two main offence categories which featured in 86 per cent of the responses were traffic offences and property damage. Traffic-related offences such as dangerous driving, drink driving, and speeding were found in 53 percent of responses. 33 percent specifically referred to ‘hooning’ as the key issue affecting their area and a topic of discussion at meetings.
There was a similar level of interest in property type offences (26 percent) specifically property damage such as vandalism and graffiti. One response summed this up by saying:
Property damage, i.e. dwellings, vehicles (many streets are overnight car-parks) and other premises (businesses, schools, halls, public toilets, etc.)
There was likewise a similar level of interest (26 percent) in stolen motor vehicles and wanting more specific information such as models of vehicles and arson of vehicles.
Issues such as family violence and youth offending were equally mentioned (20 percent) in the responses received.
Whilst only 20 percent of responses mentioned wanting locally specific information (council region level), the need was implicit in almost all of the responses. The need for information at the local level was identified as necessary to inform meetings, report back to the community, and to inform responses to community concerns:
I feel any reports on all aspects of crime and antisocial behaviour can only help us in Neighbourhood Watch groups. We can get a feel of what direction we need to go in order to help keep our communities safe.
In summary, NHW co-ordinators clearly endorse the approach taken to provide evidence-based reports that analyse various offence trends. The feedback received identifies the need for this analysis to be as locally specific as possible and to focus on traffic offences and property damage in the first instance, followed by family violence and youth offending.
These responses will help guide the content of our future crime analysis reports and research on contemporary crime prevention advice.
As a result of your feedback, the chart below is a Histogram of “Home Burglaries” as reported in the Tasmania Police, Annual Corporate Performance Reports for the years 2014 to 2021 inclusive across the three combined Police Districts, Southern, Northern and Western.
The chart details the number of burglaries for each year with “Trend Lines” inserted for each District. The Southern District statistics show a definite downward trend. The Northern District statistics show a moderate downward trend. The Western District shows a “Flat Trend Line” which, as you can see from the individual reported Crimes, remains constant, with a noticeable drop in reports between 2020 and 2021 being at the height of the COVID-19 Lock Down.
This is the second report for the Bulletin of this kind (in the form of a graph, with the actual reported data), and we would like to continue presenting Crime Information data each month. There are a wide range of Crimes and Offences that can be presented in this format for your information. The list of those Crimes and Offences can be found in your May 2022 Edition of the Bulletin https://nhwtas.org.au/may-2022-bulletin/.
Feel free to request the next Histogram subject matter, which would be beneficial if depicted in the State-wide format, as displayed above.
Last month we also provided some historical data about the theft of motor vehicles. A police media release in late June reported, …the detectives have recently charged a 15-year-old youth in [southern Tasmania] with the theft of expensive motorcycles that were easily accessible and were not secured with secondary security features.
Tasmania Police advise extra precautions to protect motorcycles are to:
These steps minimise the likelihood of becoming a victim. If you are not a motorbike rider yourself, you have neighbours, friends and family who are – so think how you can share these tips with them.
Get Online Week (GOW) is a campaign run by the Good Things Foundation to improve the online skills of older Australians. Neighbourhood Watch Australasia makes it easy for all groups to access $700 of grant funds by organising a simple activity in their community during GOW, 17 – 23 October 22.
Eleven Tasmanian Neighbourhood Watch Groups benefited from this initiative in 2021. We want those same groups to do something again and we want more of our groups to also register for the grants this year. Here are some suggestions of the type of events you could arrange to qualify for a grant:
Basically, Get Online Week grants are there for organisations like NHW to inspire and motivate members of our community to Try One Thing new online. And in doing so, learn essential digital skills. General information is available from the Good Things Foundation at Get Online Week. More specific NHWA information about how to access the grant is available now from Maria or Lizzie at firstname.lastname@example.org or 0428 377 901.
Don’t put it off, applications must be lodged by 28 July 22. Get NHWA to do the work for you!
The term ‘cleared’ refers to the solution of a crime, and not to the trial by court and final disposition. Because Neighbourhood Watch has a formal Memorandum of Understanding with Tasmania Police our Watches are able to access crime statistics for their area. To make this data more meaningful, we now include some analysis of the crime trends to get a better understanding of what the statistics mean for us as individuals and community groups.
Offences Cleared is a nationally agreed standard to inform on the outcome of an investigation. It is a reasonable measure of police success. As a statistical definition it is quite detailed, but in simple terms it refers to the solution of a crime. Such as, the police identifying an offender for whom they believe there is sufficient evidence to pursue a prosecution. It does not mean that a prosecution occurred in all cases and there are a number of exceptions and reasons why this could be so. Just in case you were wondering!
Neighbourhood Watch has once again partnered with Bunnings are partnering with NHW to combine their Crime Prevention Week with our Neighbourhood Watch Week from 7 to 13 November 22. We call it The Week. This is a great opportunity for NHW to engage face to face with our communities; promote our brand and activities; and even raise some money to fund other worthwhile activities.
Neighbourhood Watch has once again partnered with Bunnings across Australia and New Zealand to host Neighbourhood Watch/Bunnings Crime Prevention Week (The Week) from 7 – 13 November 22. This is a fantastic opportunity for our NHW groups to engage with their local community and even raise some funds for other NHW activities throughout the year.
Please encourage your Coordinator to contact your local Bunnings Activities Coordinator to explore what activities can be held at their Warehouse during The Week. Events that have been successful in the past have included:
NHW Howrah Gardens/Glebe Hill has already locked in their Bunnings Barbecue at the Mornington Warehouse on Sunday, 13 November 22. There are seven Bunnings Warehouses in Tasmania. How good would it be to host an event at each store during The Week? If you want some help, I am only a phone call (but preferably an email) away.
Neighbourhood Watch Tasmania works closely with Crime Stoppers to ensure we support our joint efforts to prevent and solve crime.
Remember, you don’t have to provide your name or address to Crime Stoppers if you don’t want to.
But you can still qualify for a reward if your information helped to solve a crime.
Neighbourhood Watch operates in every state and territory of Australia. Our peak body, Neighbourhood Watch Australasia, also includes our partner from across the Tasman, Neighbourhood Support in New Zealand.
On 31 May this year I was fortunate to attend the Neighbourhood Watch Conference for England and Wales (pop 60 million) in London, celebrating 40 years of operations. I will provide more information later, but I did want to share these take aways with you.
30 July The International Day of Friendship to promote friendship between peoples.
27 August Grill & Drill at Bunnings Glenorchy (NHW Greater Glenorchy in attendance)
4-10 September National Child Protection Week
8 September RUOK Day
5 October International Coffee with a Cop Day
17-23 October Get Online Week
7-13 November Neighbourhood Watch Week
19 November NHWT AGM at Country Club, Launceston
Yours in Neighbourhood Watch
Peter Edwards, President
Good Neighbours Create Safer Communities
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