|A dawn raid somewhere in Cambridgshire|
Our own Home Office mandated Park Farm Neighbourhood Watch in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire UK has taken the concept to new levels, harnessing the advantages of social media, broadcast TV & Radio networks on VoIP, 'Lucilive' Skype and ISDN2 with the objective of reducing neighbourhood ASB, neighbourhood property crime, domestic violence, promoting the 101 premium line police reporting system facilitating real-time reporting of crime and intelligence alerts.
Following a small conference held in Vienna, Austria, the European Neighbourhood Watch Association (EUNWA) was formed. Its not yet been established if the EUNWA will be suitable for the UK, as it is currently a registered Austrian charity, or is it really targeted at EC membership in the Eurozone mainland, where the Neighbourhood Watch movement is specifically aimed at burglary and property crime?
Anti Social Behavior (ASB) for example is not high on the European agenda, as they routinely have pistol packing police and claim to have more robust systems in place (including water cannon!)
Julian Bray from PFNW commented: "What we don't want to see is yet another Euro talking shop set up, which in effect will subsatantially dilute the already slender time and financial resources available within the UK and Peterborough. We could in any case be out of Europe within two years! Having said that we are more than happy to nominate Jim Maddan Chair of Neighbourhood and Home Watch Network (NHWN) as our own representative, as many mainstream NW organisations have already done."
Austrian Karl Brunnbauer, Founding President EUNWA said: “Citizens across Europe are increasingly worried about becoming victims of burglaries and property crime. At the same time, organised crime does not respect any national borders and criminal methods are transferred quickly from one country to another.
“It is necessary to react to these developments and keep people informed about new tricks and scams. As a consequence, proNACHBAR, the oldest Austrian neighbourhood watch organisation, which was [only] established in 2007... decided to set up a European umbrella association”.
On 23 and 24 October 2014, 40 delegates from 19 European countries, assembled to discuss national neighbourhood watch activities, approaches to crime prevention and a way forward for the European Neighbourhood Watch Association (EUNWA).
At the end of the convention, the Founding Document was signed by the participating organisations. “We are very impressed by the level of interest and participation from across Europe. It confirms that there is a need to co-operate internationally and that our effort has been worth it. We are already starting to think about next year’s conference”, says Brunnbauer.
Jim Maddan, chairman for the charity Neighbourhood and Home Watch Network (NHWN) which supports neighbourhood watch across England and Wales, gave the opening presentation: “Criminals and serious crime gangs don’t care about borders and actually thrive on the opportunities which these borders can create as they can move quite freely in real time, yet information and knowledge about them take considerably longer. The EUNWA is the start of placing a formal link between members to knock these barriers down”.
The EU it has to be said already has a crime prevention remit and can be contacted via http://www.eucpn.org/
E&OE google.com/+JulianBray All Enquiries 01733 345581 BROADCAST ISDN DIRECT LINK: 01733 345020 [G722 Codec] .