Merton Council is again working alongside Fearless, the dedicated arm of the Crimestoppers charity which works with young people and helps them to access non-judgmental information and advice about crime and criminal activity.
This week, Merton’s Community Safety Partnership and Fearless will launch a targeted six-week-long campaign to raise awareness around serious violence and criminal exploitation in the borough, hoping to build trust and confidence with young people so that they can speak up and report crime in their local community.
A series of adverts will run across the borough and on digital channels which use the stories of three young people who are victims of exploitation. There will also be online awareness-raising sessions held for professionals, practitioners and those working with young people.
Young people often face barriers which prevent them from reporting crime, often crime which is being perpetrated against them. There are many reasons for this: distrust of the police and fear of repercussions primary among them.
Fearless allows young people to pass on information about crime 100% anonymously: through an online form at Fearless.org or by calling 0800 555 111, at any time, any day of the year.
Cllr Eleanor Stringer, Cabinet Member for Civic Pride, said: “We’re very happy to again be working alongside Fearless on another campaign aimed at helping young people in Merton.
“It can be difficult sometimes for young people to see the difference between ’snitching’ and reporting crime, and to understand that the police and other bodies can be trusted.
“I hope this campaign helps to raise awareness around serious violence and criminal exploitation committed against young people in Merton, and shows that there are avenues through which they can anonymously report it.”