Merton Council and its partners will once again be embarking on a borough wide project in the coming weeks to ensure this Halloween and fireworks season is safe and enjoyable for all residents.
As one of the busiest times of year for the emergency services Merton will be putting a number of initiatives in place through the following few weeks to try and relieve some of this pressure and ensure that everyone can enjoy celebrations and feel safe whether joining in or not.
Although Merton is consistently rated as one of the safest boroughs in London, during the 13 days of the season in 2009 there were 51 incidents, an average of 3.9 incidents each day and hence tackling these issues is still a priority for the council and the Safer Merton partnership.
One key action to help tackle anti-social behaviour during this period will be late night patrols being run by the police and Merton Priory Homes’ neighbourhood wardens from 22 October – November to 7 November. These will take place around key areas in the borough over Halloween and the main fireworks display evenings on 5 and 6 November. The council’s trading standards department will also be working together with local business to ensure fireworks are not sold to anyone under 18. Shop owners will also be asked to withhold sales of eggs and flour to teenagers.
The council’s youth engagement teams will also be working alongside the emergency services to talk to young people in schools about enjoying this time of year safely.
For those members of the community who do not wish to participate ‘no trick or treat’ posters and safety advice are available from Merton Police on their website http://cms.met.police.uk/met/boroughs/merton/index or direct from your local Safer Neighbourhood Team.
Councillor Edith Macauley, Merton Council cabinet member for community safety, engagement and equalities said:
” With fear of crime being one of Merton residents’ top concerns, the Safer Merton partnership is continuing to make this time of year a priority. It is important that those wanting to take part in the festivities can do so safely and those who would rather not get involved have that choice.
‘ More people now know how to seek help and report incidents of anti-social behaviour which is good, but we also need to reduce the number of incidents that happen in the first place. Working in partnership with the police, the fire brigade, trading standards and many others we can achieve this and help everyone enjoy the Halloween and Firework season whilst still keeping safe.”