Grassroots pledge tackles crime hotspots
POLICE will stage town hallstyle meetings in crime-hit areas across Victoria in a backto-basics effort to make the streets safer and allay angst.
The events — six to be held before the end of the year — will be used to gather intelligence from residents on problems in their area.
Police will detail local crime trends and provide information on how to avoid becoming a victim.
Tailored crime-fighting projects will be developed and “relevant and accurate” crime data provided as part of the $5.6 million initiative.
The projects will operate through the establishment of 12 community-run networks to include residents, councils and local groups.
The network rollout will run over two years, starting this year in Wyndham in Melbourne’s west, along with Melton, Whittlesea, Cardinia, Latrobe and Ballarat.
Brimbank, Dandenong, Frankston, Knox, Shepparton and Geelong will follow from July next year.
“For people to feel safe in their homes and on the streets, we know that it’s crucial to have a good relationship between police and people in the local community,” Police Min- ister Lisa Neville told the Sunday Herald Sun.
But Opposition police spokesman Edward O’Donohue said more money was needed for crime prevention.
“It’s more important than ever to work with communitybased organisations to tackle the crime wave confronting Victoria,’’ he said.
Senior Victoria Police and Department of Justice staff will oversee the networks.