Crimestoppers sees positive response to youth crime campaigns

Campaigns run last year by Crimestoppers’ youth service, Fearless, saw record number of young people visit its website to find out more about crime.

By
Mark Dowie
Monday, 10th January 2022, 7:00am
Crimestoppers sees positive response to youth crime campaigns
Intelligence provided through Fearless.org saw action taken on high harm crimes as well as welfare issues.

They were also encouraged to speak up 100% anonymously.

Responding to school and youth service closures in the first half of the year, Fearless.org delivered 12 Scotland-wide campaigns focused on providing young people with key information about high harm crimes.

As a result, the charity’s website was visited more than 90,000 times by young people from across Scotland – a 120% increase compared to 2020.

Following a hard-hitting youth violence campaign, a number of weapons were found in the possession of an individual who was not known to the police and posed a danger to others.

Fearless intelligence also led to a significant amount of drugs being seized from a property along with a number of weapons, including knuckledusters, baseball bats and knives.

Information relating to child harm and neglect was received and acted upon. Children living at the property were identified as at risk and needing additional support from professional services.

Lyndsay McDade, national youth projects co-ordinator for Crimestoppers Scotland, said: “From violence and weapon possession to child harm and neglect, the information we receive from young people is crucial in making Scotland safer for everyone.

"Fearless.org is an absolute safety net for young people – for those uncomfortable about contacting the police directly, our independence and guarantee of anonymity gives them a crucial and much-needed alternative. We take what they know and pass it on whilst keeping them completely anonymous.

“It’s been a real privilege to witness and be part of our remarkable growth. I want to thank each and every young person who has trusted our charity and chosen to do the right thing by speaking up anonymously.

“As we start this New Year, I would ask young people to continue to trust us with what you know or suspect – assured that you will remain 100% anonymous. Through Fearless.org, you have a tangible, safe way to make your community a better, safer place to live.”

Ash Regan, Minister for Community Safety, said: “I would like to thank Fearless for their continued support to young people by providing information and advice about these very serious issues and how they can report anything they know or suspect about crime 100% anonymously at Fearless.org .

“The figures show this information has already proven vital in helping police tackle crime and prevent harm.

“I encourage any young person who witnesses, or has any information about crime, to report it and help keep their communities safe and resilient."

Assistant Chief Constable Gary Ritchie (Partnerships, Prevention and Community Wellbeing) added: "Having a trusted, secure and reliable crime prevention resource like Fearless available to Scotland's children and young people is invaluable. The organisation is a valued and trusted partner for Police Scotland and their contribution to helping to keep the people and neighbourhoods of our country safe, is highly significant.

"These examples show the extent of criminality which an anonymous tip-off can intercept, and the level of harm the perpetrators could have inflicted on individuals and communities may well have been substantial."​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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