New messaging system will make communities safer

Cambridgeshire’s police and crime commissioner (PCC), Sir Graham Bright, has launched a system to enable Neighbourhood Watch to become even more active in making communities safer.

Oct 2, 2013
By Paul Jacques
Detective Chief Superintendent Jon McAdam

Cambridgeshire’s police and crime commissioner (PCC), Sir Graham Bright, has launched a system to enable Neighbourhood Watch to become even more active in making communities safer.

Neighbourhood Alert is now live and allows messages to be targeted at street level to subscribers by email – allowing Neighbourhood Watch and the police to talk directly to the people they need to, when they need to.

The combined communication and administration system provides a greatly enhanced service to Neighbourhood Watch coordinators, enabling them to administrate themselves, saving police staff time.

Cambridgeshire Constabulary will use the Neighbourhood Alert platform to re-launch eCops, its messaging service that allows local officers direct contact with members of the public who have signed up to receive alerts.

Free to sign up, the public can register according to their interests, reducing information overload and ensuring that they receive targeted alerts that are more focused on their own interests. Messages can include crime-prevention advice, details of incidents and appeals for help in reducing crime in the county.

Sir Graham said: “I provided the funding for this system to allow Neighbourhood Watch and the police to communicate more effectively with communities to both tackle and prevent crime. I want new and innovative ways to free-up police time and this system does just that by reducing time spent on administration.

“This is just the first step in helping Neighbourhood Watch develop and grow to play its part in making our communities safer. I am going to continue to assist Neighbourhood Watch to increase its membership.

“I am pleased that the constabulary has also been able to use the Alert platform to re-launch an up-to-date version of its eCops messaging system.”

John Fuller, chairman of Cambridgeshire Neighbourhood Watch, said: “I am delighted that we now have a new combined communication and administration system.

“While the system is available nationally to Neighbourhood Watch groups it is important to us that we maintain strong links with the constabulary.

“The support and encouragement provided by Sir Graham ensuring the constabulary adopts the same system is very much appreciated and is a major step forward.

“The new system will enable us to administrate ourselves and this will save precious police staff time. It will also mean that our volunteer coordinators will receive more timely and relevant communications from their local policing teams which will help them to keep their communities informed and safe.”

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