The Harrogate District Businesses Against Crime Partnership (HDBAC) has been re-accredited by the National Association of Business Crime Partnerships – once again achieving the Safer Business Award (SBA) with distinction.
The SBA is the nationally recognised standard for Business Crime Reduction Partnerships which recognises that a partnership is operating lawfully, in accordance with the Data Protection Act (DPA), and national codes of practice and advice which are designed to promote effective partnership work.
HDBAC not only provides a CCTV Radiolink service to subscribing shop, bars and clubs, in conjunction with Harrogate Borough Council, but also works closely with the police to share information about crime trends and incidents with its members to help staff identify and challenge would-be offenders.
The Safer Business Award accreditation demonstrates that partnerships operate legally, to high standards, and reflects their increasing professionalism. Every Business Crime Partnership wishing to retain its national accreditation is required to submit itself to re-examination every two years.
HDBAC was first inspected in 2014, when it achieved the ‘with distinction’ level after undergoing the rigorous inspection process. This involved scrutinising the policies and procedures that have been put in place to support the partnership, examining the records of incidents and offenders, evaluating the progress made since the last inspection and interviewing lead officers.
Steve Booth, Regional Operations Assessor from the National Association of Business Crime Partnerships, who conducted the inspection said:
This is an excellent small partnership which has integrated itself very well into the local community safety strategy. Its standard of record keeping is excellent and it has a proven track record of success in combatting crime, especially against the retail sector and more so when working as part of the wider regional Yorkshire and Humberside Crime Partnership.
Councillor Mike Chambers, Harrogate Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing and Safer Communities said:
I am extremely pleased to see that our Harrogate District Businesses Against Crime Partnership has once again achieved the highest level of national recognition. It is an effective partnership, bringing together our CCTV service, police and businesses to combat crime. Those shops and pubs and clubs that have joined the scheme can be satisfied they are getting a value for money service.
The CCTV Radiolink scheme operates in Harrogate, Ripon and Knaresborough and offers retail staff, licensees and other members of the business community the ability to communicate by radio directly with operators in the CCTV control room and to rapidly summon assistance from the emergency services. For a small monthly fee, businesses can subscribe to the scheme, and receive a radio handset from the scheme’s radio suppliers, Apex Radio Systems Limited.
Jim Curry, Apex’s Managing Director said:
Apex operate over 250 radio systems nationally similar to the one in operation and controlled from Harrogate and we can say that the support from the local agencies on this particular scheme is exemplary.
They really care that the system is a success and promote the usage and the value of the system to all users in the town.
Apex hold this radio system as an example of what can be achieved when all partners work together to ensure success.
In another new initiative for 2016, HDBAC working in conjunction with the Harrogate District Community Safety Group is providing its members with free ear piece sets for their radios, to help improve their contact with CCTV operators.
Chris Chelton, Harrogate Borough Council’s Radiolink Coordinator explained:
We know shop and bar staff can often be very busy dealing with customers and not able to hear every radio alert that is passed out. Having one member of staff with an ear piece headset will allow them to monitor suspect descriptions from other shops or bars, even whilst serving customers, and be move aware of what is happening when a crime or incident occurs.
The headsets also have an in-line microphone so they can discreetly speak to CCTV control if they need to report a crime or pass a description to other radio users.