Incidents of anti-social behaviour, criminal damage and arson can increase during the summer.
Parents cannot be with their children all the time, but should be aware where they are, who they are with and what they are doing. Talking to their children about potential dangers and their consequences could make a difference to their safety.
As part of the force-wide summer initiative ‘Respect: It’s a two way street’, officers and Police Community Support Officers (PCSO) will be out-and-about in communities engaging with young people. They are interested in their views and will also be offering safety advice.
Superintendent Ian Coxhead said, “It’s important for young people to understand potential risks and consequences of their actions if they get involved in what they may consider ‘a bit of a laugh’. No parent wants to hear that their child has got into trouble or has caused people to feel alarmed or distressed.”
Anti-social behaviour can be caused by people of all ages and from different backgrounds, it’s not confined to young people.
Some people raise concerns that they feel intimidated if they see a group of young people ‘congregating’ in an area but they may not be doing anything anti-socially, just meeting up with friends.
“Our message is to keep safe and feel safe,” continued Supt Coxhead. “We want people of all ages to feel comfortable to go somewhere without fear. If no one knows where a child is and something happens to them, it can be very difficult to find them and get any help they need.”
“We would ask parents to discuss these issues with their children to keep them safe. Help young people to join in positive activities where they can have fun, meet new friends and keep away from committing crime or anti-social behaviour. It will also give you peace of mind knowing they are safe.”
Matthew Ellis, Police and Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire launched Space 2016 to increase young people’s skills, improve their health and wellbeing and create opportunities for young people to take part in positive activities to help make communities safer.
During the summer holidays there is a range of activities, many of them free, taking place for 11 to 17-year-olds as part of Space 2016. For calendar of events visit http://www.staffordshirespace.uk, and follow @StaffsSpace on Twitter. Space 2016 runs up to and including 2 September.
There are plenty of schemes that young people can also get involved with to have fun, learn new skills and develop social and team building skills.
- Police Cadets
- Armed forces cadets
- Duke of Edinburgh schemes
- National Citizen Services: The Change Programme
- other well-known clubs such as Scouts, Girl Guides