New wardens to help police town and cut crime

A community warden scheme was launched at a recent meeting of Mid and East Antrim PCSP. INCT 51-653-CON
A community warden scheme was launched at a recent meeting of Mid and East Antrim PCSP. INCT 51-653-CON

Mid and East Antrim Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) has launched a new phase of the Community Safety Wardens project.

The launch took place at a PCSP meeting, at Larne Town Hall, last Wednesday.

PCSP Chair, Councillor Andrew Wilson said: “This scheme addresses key elements of the PCSP Action plan in delivering an additional community resource with the capacity to assist with low level crime and anti-social behaviour.

“Wardens have been able to detect and assist on a wide range of issues including youth, drugs abuse, general safety problems, graffiti, litter and dog fouling.

It aims to reduce anti-social behaviour by five per cent.

“The wardens are also addressing the fear of crime as a reassuring presence both in the community sector and the business sector,” he added.

“In addition, the PSNI finds that the wardens are an invaluable resource to call upon, which frees their officers to deal with more serious crime,” Cllr Wilson added.

The Community Safety Wardens project is funded by the NI Housing Executive and the PCSP and is managed by Ballymena Retailers Against Crime (BRAC) who have already been running a similar scheme successfully in Ballymena since 2012.

Mairead Myles Davey, from the Housing Executive, added: “The Community Safety Wardens have forged close links with the Housing Executive Neighbourhood Officers in all three areas in order to identify and resolve low level anti-social behaviour at the earliest possible opportunity.

“They also provide a reassuring and visible presence in the areas.”

The new scheme brings Larne and Carrickfergus into the area of operations for the wardens, alongside the existing service in Ballymena town centre which has been extended to rural parts of the borough.

Police in Ballymena say crime and the fear of crime are issues that “severely affect people’s quality and enjoyment of life” and wardens help to keep people safe when they are out and about and provide a visible presence.