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NEWS RELEASE

Cold Calling Control Zone to go live in Wibsey

On the 15th April West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service will be joining forces with The Neighbourhood Policing Team, Bradford South Area Co-ordinators Office, Neighbourhood Wardens and active residents of the community to launch a Cold Calling Control Zone in the Wibsey area of Bradford, thanks to POCA (Proceeds of Crime Act) money.

The launch will commence on Northfield Grove at 1pm. Information packs will be given to each house in the zone and officers from the partner organisations will be on hand to explain how the zones work, highlight the relevant authorities to call for assistance and will also ensure all stickers and lamp post signs are displayed correctly.

Officers will also be able to advise on issues such as dealing with pushy sales people, spotting a rogue trader and personal safety messages to ensure homes and residents are safe.

West Yorkshire Police will also be using this initiative as an opportunity launch the Owl Project which allows active residents to submit their e mail addresses to then be regularly notified of criminal activity in their area.

In recent years, through the help of West Yorkshire Trading Standards and partner organisations such as the Neighbourhood Policing Teams, Neighbourhood Watch, Area Committees and local housing associations, (to name a few) Cold Calling Control Zones have been funded in areas where residents have suffered at the hands of rogue traders, doorstep criminals and pushy sales people.

The main aim of the zones is to prevent incidents of doorstep crime, raise awareness of the activities of rogue traders who target vulnerable people, and give residents the confidence to say NO to uninvited callers as a community. Therefore, reducing levels and fear of crime in the allocated areas.

Lynne Smith, Wibsey Ward Councillor said “This initiative is a simple yet effective mechanism in the fight against doorstep criminals and cold callers. The popularity of the zones is thriving across West Yorkshire, but feedback from residents is imperative to ensure Trading Standards can continue to make improvements and develop the zones further’.

Michael Melvin, a local resident who has been at the forefront of establishing this zone and who is webmaster for community website, Wibsey.net, said “The success of these zones can be largely put down to the involvement and support of the communities where the zones exist. Taking ownership of such initiatives empowers communities and provides them with the confidence to take action and report incidents of this nature’.

Graham Hebblethwaite, West Yorkshire’s Chief Trading Standards Officer said: “The simplest way of avoiding problems is to never deal on the doorstep. Too many people still fall victim to doorstep conmen by being too trusting or not wanting to appear rude. A polite but firm statement that you never deal on the doorstep is the best advice I can give.”

For further information on Cold Calling Control Zones please visit http://www.ts.wyjs.org.uk/wyjs-trading-doorstep-crime.asp or call Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 08454 0405060

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