SCLT Support Vulnerable Victims of Crime
September saw a new weapon in the battle against doorstep criminals being unveiled by the award-winning Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT). Victims of doorstep crime are invited to take part in a special ‘Victim’s Surgery’ at a local community centre where they are given individual support in the areas of crime prevention, referrals to statutory and voluntary service partners and advice on avoiding future bogus callers.
The clients received a ‘goodie bag’ to take home after the surgery, which contained a home safe, a mobile telephone, a personal attack alarm and information to help keep them safe in the future.
All the attendees at the initial surgery really enjoyed the experience and stated that they enjoyed the chance to meet fellow victims and discuss the effects and consequences of being deceived by unscrupulous doorstep criminals.
Mike Wedlock lead the groundbreaking surgery, he said, “Bringing victims together undoubtedly helps them understand that they are not foolish, and are not the only people who have fallen prey to the bogus callers. Every client that we help will have access to our ongoing telephone support service in perpetuity, and hopefully they will leave our care felling safe and confident that they can win the battle of the doorstep”
SCLT Visit the Asian Day Centre
Tuesday 24th September saw PC Roger Ibrahim and Sgt Ash Jones of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) attending the popular Asian Day Centre which is situated in the Easton Community Centre, Kilburn Street, Easton, Bristol, to provide advice on avoiding doorstep crime and home & personal safety for older adults.
The day centre is extremely well attended by members of the Bristol Asian older adult community, and Roger and Ash handed out copies of the latest edition of the Senior Siren newsletter, as well as ‘no cold caller’ door stickers and other crime prevention leaflets.
Ash Jones gave the main presentation, which was simultaneously translated from English for the members who are not native speakers of the language, he said “It has been a great pleasure to come to the Asian Day Centre and to have a chat with so many distinguished members of the Bristol Asian community. I hope the audience enjoyed the presentation and took away the message that doorstep security is the secret to beating the bogus caller”
SCLT Attend Social Housing Event
September saw officers of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) attending the 1st annual Brunelcare Tenants Event with the 1000 invited guests of the social housing provider.
The SCLT staffed their safety stall at the event, which was held in the historic surroundings of the M Shed museum on Bristol waterfront. The day included many interesting presentations, including a fascinating insight into World War 2 diets and entertainment provided by the Kooky Ukes sing-a-long troupe.
Anthony Panayiotou assisted many older adults with questions relating to home and personal safety, he said, “It’s always a delight to spend time with the senior members of this vibrant community. Today has been an opportunity to pass safety tips to many vulnerable citizens, and hopefully make them think about how they would deal with bogus callers and telephone scammers”
Charity Status for SCLT
August 2012 has marked a landmark occasion for a group of volunteer police officers and staff from the Bristol Policing District, who have had their efforts in running the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) recognised by the Charity Commission, which has now added the team to the list of UK registered charities (No: 1148383).
The small team of volunteers came together in December 2009 to provide a tailored; crime prevention, victim support and social advocacy service for the growing, older adult population in South Bristol. Soon the scheme had expanded to cover most of Bristol, and soon neighbouring police forces were getting in touch to see how they could set up similar teams in their own areas.
Ashley Jones founded the team in 2009, he said, “When I put together an idea to provide an enhanced service for the older adult citizens of our area I never thought that 3-years down the line we would be recognised as an official charity, and have helped as many people as we have done over these years”
“It really does go to show what dedicated and motivated individuals can achieve if they work together with a common desire to help people. This charity recognition is down to all the officers, police staff and civilian volunteers who have given up their own time in the cause of a better society”
One of the key engagement tools of the SCLT is their award-winning ‘Senior Siren’ newsletter, which is delivered, free, to many thousands of seniors in Bristol each quarter. The newsletter features key crime prevention advice, as well as interviews with local celebrities and even a puzzles page, which has an enthusiastic following.
Mike Wedlock is the editor of the newsletter, he said, “The Senior Siren allows our message of home and personal safety to reach the most vulnerable members of our neighbourhoods. It is delivered by meals-on-wheels and is available in many public buildings, as well as the via SCLT website. Why not take a look at copy soon; you will be surprised at how entertaining it is, as well as having all the information require to help keep you safe from distraction burglars and rogue traders"
The volunteers from the SCLT are happy to attend local events and meetings to give safety presentations to the older adult population in the Bristol and surrounding area. If you would like to discuss a guest speaker at an event you are planning, please get in touch on 07879116009 (24-hr message service)
SCLT Represented at Celebrating Age Festival 2012
Officers of the elite Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) recently set up their safety stall at the annual Celebrating Age Festival which was held at the Colston Hall in Central Bristol on Saturday 23rd June 2012. The festival is the largest of its kind in the South West of England and saw many thousands of older adults visiting the event, and speaking with the representatives of the voluntary, statutory and social groups who participated in the festival.
The SCLT stall featured all the usual brochures on crime prevention, as well as the very latest edition of the award-winning ‘Senior Siren’ newsletter, which is published by the SCLT each quarter. The present edition features an interview with local actor David Prowse MBE who played the role of Darth Vader in the original Star Wars movies, as well as many features on home and personal safety which are interspersed with lifestyle features, games and health advice.
Ash Jones and Anthony Panayiotuo staffed the staff during the festival and spoke with hundreds of very welcome callers to the show. Ash Jones said, “This has been the 3rd year that the SCLT have been represented at this great event, and it has been a pleasure meeting so many visitors to the festival and also all the professionals and volunteers who work together to make this event such a success. We hope our presence has made people think about staying safe when dealing with doorstep callers, and we look forward to meeting all our friends again at the next Celebrating Age Festival”
SCLT Embrace Older Adult Diversity in Bristol
The final week of the Bristol Celebrating Age Festival saw officers of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) fully embracing the differences of the older adult population in Bristol by making a guest appearance at the ‘Bi Now!’ event for gay members of the senior community which has been held at Café Kino in Stokes Croft.
The event was held as part of the annual Celebrating Age Festival which aims to engage with, and encourage members of the older adult population to enjoy life to the full, and get involved with the many groups and activities which are available to people in later-life.
The ‘Bi Now!’ event saw members of the senior LGBT community meeting over tea and cakes to network and share experiences in convivial surroundings.
Ryan Jones is the LGBT Liaison Officer on the SCLT, and visited the event to distribute copies of the Senior Siren newsletter to the meeting, he said, “Tonight has been a great opportunity to meet members of the older LGBT community in a social environment and to discuss the importance of staying vigilant to the dangers of doorstep crime. I hope everyone we have met tonight, will be safer in their daily lives following our presentation”
Senior Citizen Liaison Team Represented at Regional Memorial Event
Ash Jones and Mike Wedlock of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT), today (Thursday 17th May 2012) attended the annual commemoration of the nation’s war dead at the Memorial Woodlands War Memorial which is situated in idyllic and serene surroundings at Earthcot Green, Alveston, Bristol.
The substantial granite memorial commemorates the Service men and women from across the South West of England who have lost their lives in conflict since the turn of the millennium.
The memorial comprises of a spiral of newly planted English Oak trees encircling a flat memorial plaque; the trees will grow and intertwine over time to create a lasting legacy for hundreds of years to come.
The ceremony was attended by the Vice-Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire Robert Bernays and representatives from across the Services as well as a number of invited guests from the region. The service was be led by military Padre Steven Forster in the on-site chapel, before a procession to the memorial site where the Vice-Lord Lieutenant laid a wreath alongside representatives from the Army, Royal Navy, Royal Air Force and Royal Marines and Royal British Legion.
SCLT Director Ash Jones said, “The Memorial Woodlands are a perfect location to situate this simple, yet very evocative and beautiful memorial to those who have died in action since the year 2000. The idyllic surroundings lend themselves very well to personal refection on the sacrifices made by those being commemorated. I feel privileged to have been present at this event and to have represented Senior Citizen Liaison Team
Rogue Traders Hounded Out of South West
Tuesday 15th May 2012 saw officers of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) joining other police colleagues in a variety of activities around the force area to mark National Rogue Trader Day.
Rogue traders often prey upon the most vulnerable citizens in society by unscrupulously offering and carrying out work and services which are not required or requested by the target individual, and usually at inflated prices which do not comply with Trading Standards guidelines around quotations or cooling off periods.
Ash Jones and his colleagues on the SCLT were out on the road on National Rogue Trader Day, visiting groups of older adults all around the City of Bristol. Ash Jones commented on his day of activities, “Probably the best form of defence against a rogue trader is to keep your door closed to any unexpected callers. If you do require maintenance services at your home it is wise to contact ‘West of England Care and Repair’ who offer a range of home improvement services and use only accredited tradesmen. If you are approached on your doorstep by a pushy salesman, close the door and call the police immediately”
Volunteer Police Team Take Silver at Prestigious National Awards
Wednesday 28th March 2012 saw representatives from the Bristol based Senior Citizen Liaison Team travelling to London to participate in the annual Improvement & Efficiency Awards and Seminar which were held at the very impressive Church House in Westminster, London (The HQ of the Church of England).
The all-volunteer SCLT have now been in existence for 2-years and have assisted in reducing the number of distraction burglaries in Bristol by over 50% during the lifetime of the scheme. They have also provided an enhanced victim support service to over 50 highly vulnerable victims of doorstep crime which has significantly reduced re-offending rates amongst such victims.
Ash Jones was present at the award ceremony, he said, “It has been a very pleasant and motivating experience to attend this seminar and has been topped-off by winning the prestigious silver award in the ‘Best Police Project’ category. We will continue to seek new ways to drive down doorstep crime and make Bristol the safest city in the UK to be a senior citizen”
Senior Citizen Liaison Team Continue to Spread the Message
Officers from the Bishopsworth based Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) recently attended the annual volunteer conference of the groundbreaking Golden Oldies charity at Wick Court in South Gloucestershire. The Golden Oldies are a group which promote health and independence in the older adult population through song and music. They host many sessions every week throughout the South West, and count Sir Cliff Richard as their patron and one of their biggest supporters.
The SCLT volunteers gave a presentation to the Golden Oldies team, which included information on the work of the award winning team, and how to signpost older adults to services which will make them less likely to become victims of crime.
Founder and Chief Officer of Golden Oldies, Grenville Jones, was present at the event, he said, “It is great to welcome the SCLT team to our conference and to share the crime prevention and personal safety advice which can greatly assist our clients. It just shows what benefits we can achieve when we all work together”
SCLT Visit Older Adult Wellbeing Event
Wednesday 20th June 2012 saw officers of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) setting up their public engagement stall at the Bedminster Over 55’s Wellbeing Day at the South Bristol Christian Centre. The Team joined fellow community representatives from Bristol City Council, the NHS and a variety of voluntary and statutory agencies who also participated in the event.
The Wellbeing Day formed part of the annual 2-week long Celebrating Age Festival, which takes place in Bristol each year. All the events which form part of the festival offer opportunities for older adults so see some of the many services and activities which can be accessed by senior citizens.
Ash Jones is a member of the SCLT and staffed the stall on the day of the event, he said, “The annual Celebrating Age Festival is a fantastic chance for many support agencies to showcase their services to the senior population. I have really enjoyed meeting the visitors to today’s event and giving them crime prevention advice which will make their lives safer”
SCLT Visit Film Club in Bedminster
As part of the annual Celebrating Age Festival in the South West area, there are a great number of events taking place around the city to support and engage older adults who live, work and visit the vibrant City of Bristol.
One such event, the Over 60’s Film Club at the Southbank Centre in Bedminster, received a visit from the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) on Monday 11th June 2012, when Ash Jones and Ryan Jones carried out an unannounced guest appearance at the beginning of the feature film.
The duo gave a presentation about staying safe from doorstep criminals and handed out copies of the award-winning ‘Senior Siren’ newsletter to all present.
Ryan Jones said, “Today has been a great opportunity to meet some new friends and pass some information to them which should make their daily lives a lot safer when dealing with doorstep callers to their homes. We always encourage our clients to be alert to any unexpected callers, and to make sure they are100% certain of the identity of anyone they let inside their homes”
Cycling Forum for Bristol Older Adults
Monday 3rd September saw officers from the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) taking part in an open forum on community concerns for older-adults, which was organised by the Bristol Older People’s Forum at the Malcolm X Centre.
PC Roger Ibrahim fielded questions from the very passionate audience on several subjects, including cycling on pavements which attracted much attention from the crowd, which numbered between 50-60 older adults. Also speaking on the subject of cycling safety were representatives of pro-cycling groups, as well as several community activists.
PC Roger Ibrahim of the SCLT said, “This is clearly a subject that attracts a significant amount of debate within the pavement-using community. There is also a misguided perception that the law enforcement agencies turn a blind eye to cyclists who make use of the pavement inappropriately”
SCLT Visit Bristol & Avon Chinese Woman's Group
Monday 29th October 2012 saw Roger Ibrahim of the Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) appearing as a guest speaker at a meeting of the Bristol & Avon Chinese Woman’s Group at St Agnes Church in St Paul’s.
Roger, an experienced member of the SCLT Outreach Team, gave a presentation on avoiding doorstep crime & home and personal safety to the audience of 50 people.
Roger Ibrahim said, “It has been a pleasure to join the Chinese Woman’s Group today and to share some tips on doorstep crime and general safety. I have to thank the interpreter who skilfully translated my presentation into Mandarin and Cantonese, which cannot have been easy. I look forward to joining them again soon at one of the future meetings”
Senior Citizen Liaison Team Win National Award
The Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) came into existence as a volunteer-based community project in December 2009. Working from a small room in a Bristol Police Station, the team of police officers and staff formulated a plan to offer an enhanced crime prevention, victim support and social advocacy service to older adults in the Bristol area, all achieved by volunteering their own time outside of duty committments.
The past 3-years have seen the team go from strength-to-strength, culminating in the SCLT being recognised as a registered charity by the UK Charity Commission in July 2012.
November saw the team recognised for their work in reducing crime by the UK insurance industry at their annual awards ceremony in Mayfair, London. Ashley Jones, a trustee of the SCLT Charity, attended the ceremony and received the prestigious National Risk Management Award on behalf of the team.
Ash Jones said, “Over the last 3-years we have he honoured with several awards for various reasons. However, to win an national award for reducing crime, and most importantly reducing the number of victims of crime, brings the greatest satisfaction of all. We feel genuinely humbled by this recognition, and delighted that others see our work as a positive step towards the Big Society”
Volunteer Team Receive Prestigious National Honour
Thursday 6th December 2012 proved to be a historic day for the Senior Citizen Liaison Team charity, which is based in the Avon and Somerset area, as two of the trustees of the group travelled to The Houses of Parliament in London to receive a Certificate of Merit as part of the 2012 Tilley Awards ~ (the national Home Office sponsored problem-solving awards).
The Senior Citizen Liaison Team (SCLT) was formed in 2009 by volunteers from Avon and Somerset Constabulary, to provide an enhanced, elite service to the older adult population of Bristol and the neighbouring areas.
Speaking at the ceremony, Jeremy Browne MP, the Minister for Crime Prevention, praised the winners, saying: 'The Tilley Awards celebrate the hard work people across the country have put in to make their communities safe and enjoyable places to live’.
'Projects like those highlighted today demonstrate that even in the most difficult of circumstances there is often a real community spirit and genuine enthusiasm among local people to work together to tackle problems. The role of cutting crime is not the responsibility of the police alone, we all have a part to play to ensure we not only feel safe in our own community but also feel proud to live there.'
Ash Jones of is one of the trustees of the SCLT charity and attended the ceremony with fellow trustee Mike Wedlock, he said; “When we commenced our journey, with the goal of providing a supremely enhanced service for older adults who have been victims of doorstep crime, or who are at risk of becoming victims, I could never have imagined that we would have ended up in Westminster Palace meeting the Minister for Crime Prevention. It is a great honour and provides even greater motivation for all our volunteers to keep up the good work”