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Merseyside Police:welcome students to the city

September 18, 2012, 10:58 am

Officers in Liverpool North and South have launched their annual operation to educate Freshers on their personal safety awareness.

Operation Studentsafe is aimed at the 40,000 plus students that will be coming into the region to attend one of the four further education establishments in Liverpool, Liverpool University, John Moores University, Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts and Hope University.

Liverpool North Officers will be at Freshers fairs in the coming weeks, where they will be chatting with students and offering crime prevention and personal safety advice.

Officers will also have a heightened presence in the city as the student nights in our city’s bars, clubs and pubs start up again. This will target students as they travel back to their student accommodation, making sure they don’t use their phone as they walk home, don’t carry large sums of cash and ensuring that people don’t travel home alone and stay together with friends.

Merseyside Police is continually working hard to reduce street crime offences and officers are working along with other agencies such as Citysafe, universities and student unions to help clamp down on the chance of students becoming a victim of crime.

Acting Sergeant Emma Haffenden, said: “Merseyside is a very safe place to live and socialise.  We want students to follow simple safety advice to ensure that they do not become a victim of crime and can enjoy this exciting new time in their lives.

“We understand that crime prevention is not one of your top priorities, but unfortunately some criminals do see students as easy targets. We will be doing everything in our power to prevent students becoming victims of crime by working with the universities to provide students with advice on keeping themselves and their property safe.

“We take crimes committed against students very seriously. Only recently we secured a five-and-a-half sentence for a 35-year-old man who committed knifepoint robberies of two students in Liverpool city centre in 2008.

“We will be highly visible and available throughout the academic year to maintain the hard work already done in reducing robbery and be accessible to speak to the students to ensure they enjoy their time in Liverpool as safely as possible.”

Dont forget our City Centre Cop Shop at St Johns Precinct is open from 9am to 5pm seven days a week and staff will be happy to assist you with any queries you may have. Alternatively you can always visit our website for more information www.merseyside.police.uk/crimeprevention

For advice or further information please contact Merseyside Police on 101 though if it is an emergency always call 999.

Staying safe as a student

 

Protecting your stuff

 

Before you move into your new place

 

  • Get your things insured. Ask if your parents home contents insurance will still cover your possessions while youre away, and if it doesnt you should shop around for the best deal. Check whether expensive items like computers are fully covered for the cost of replacement.
  • Most insurance companies insist that, if you live in halls or a shared house, you must have a lock on the door of your room. Make sure it opens from the inside without a key, though, in case of emergency.
  • Get your valuable security marked using a UV pen or SmartWater, a commercial system that allows your possessions to be identified and returned to you if they are stolen and recovered.
  • Don’t forget, you can register any valuable property (e.g. laptops, mobile phones, mp3s) on www.immobilise.com free of charge. This will assist the police to return lost or stolen items to their rightful owners and also act as a deterrent to offenders.

While youre moving in

 

  • Dont leave your car or your room unattended and unlocked while carrying your things, even for a couple of minutes.

After you move in

 

  • If your building has locking street doors, or if theyre security protected by a PIN or swipe card, never let anyone you dont know follow you in. Always make sure the door is securely closed behind you, day or night.
  • Get to know the people in your building so that you can spot anyone whos not meant to be there.
  • Put valuables like laptops and MP3 in a safe place, preferably in a locked drawer. If you have a television, CD or DVD player try to position them where they cant be seen from outside your room.
  • When you go out lock your room, close your curtains and leave a low-power light on. NEVER leave a note on your door. If people need to know where you are or how long youll be, theyll text you.
  • If youre in a hall, get to know the warden. Theyre your first contact about safety and security, and probably a mine of information about the local shops and cafés as well.
  • Take your valuables with you when you go home for the holidays.

A word about drugs

 

  • You probably know quite a bit about drugs already, but its only fair that we bring you up to speed about the law. Thats our specialist area. In 2009, cannabis was reclassified from a Class C to a Class B drug. This means that if youre caught with a small amount of cannabis for personal use in your possession, if its your first offence the police will probably give you a cannabis warning, if its your second offence youre likely to be given a Penalty Notice for Disorder, with an £80 on-the-spot fine or if its your third offence you will probably be arrested. If youre convicted, you could face jail terms of up to five years for possession
  • Even a caution will stay on your police records for five years. A conviction can mean expulsion from university or college, and most employers will check whether you have a criminal record before offering you a job. If youre convicted of supply, dealing, production or trafficking the prison sentence can be up to 14 years. So think about the consequences.
  • With drugs, like with most things, the more you know the safer youll be. For example, ecstasy doesnt make you thirsty, its all the dancing and leaping about that does that. But drinking too much water can be as catastrophic as not drinking any. No more than a pint an hour, sipped slowly, is the safe way to stay hydrated.
  • And keep an eye on your friends to make sure theyre safe too. For another example, did you realise that magic mushrooms are a Class A drug? The penalties in that area are very serious indeed. For reliable advice on risks and effects cannabis or any other recreational drugs, talk to FRANK on 0800 77 66 00 or visit www.talktofrank.com.

Taxis

  • Take a taxi you can trust – use a licensed black hackney cab from a legitimate taxi rank rather than flagging down a random car
  • Some clubs and pubs will book a cab for you and let you know when it is outside.
  • If youre unsure ask to see the taxi drivers license before you get in the car. Legitimate taxis will have this clearly displayed in the vehicle
  • If youd rather get the bus then check the times ahead and stick together
  • Some halls of residences put on buses from and to venues. Find out if there is one running – itll save you money as well as keeping you safe

Drinking

 

  • Keep your drink with you at all times and never leave it unattended
  • Dont accept drinks from strangers. We all love a free drink but would it taste so good knowing it might have been spiked?
  • Pace yourself – youre more vulnerable when youre drunk

Anti-social behaviour

 

  • Students, and young people in general, are often blamed for anti-social behaviour. And if youre full of high spirits its easy to play your music so loud that its a real nuisance to other people, or start singing and shouting as you walk home in early hours of the morning, without meaning to cause any offence.
  • But it is an offence. Excessive noise when people are sleeping, or walking through somebodys flowerbed, or many other kinds of thoughtless behaviour, is illegal. It can also be very frightening. So be aware of the feelings of other people. If youre behaving anti-socially you could be fined, and you could spend the night in jail.
  • And, of course, students can be the victims of anti-social behaviour too. In halls of residence its probably wise to talk to the warden first, but if other peoples noise, harassment or vandalism is affecting you, you should report just as you would with any other crime

101 – The police non-emergency number

101 is the number to call when you want to contact your local police in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland – when it’s less urgent than a 999 call.
Find out more information about 101 by following this link.

 
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