Co-op supports neighbourhood policing

PUBLISHED: 09:33 19 February 2009 | UPDATED: 23:04 15 June 2010

POLICE officers will be able to drop into Co-operative stores across East Devon for a free cuppa as part of an innovative new scheme to help them spend more time out on the beat.

POLICE officers will be able to drop into Co-operative stores across East Devon for a free cuppa as part of an innovative new scheme to help them spend more time out on the beat.

The Co-operative is launched the initiative called 'It's a Fair Co-op of Tea', together with the Assistant Chief Constable of Devon and Cornwall Constabulary, Paul Netherton, in Exeter last week.

Police officers and police community support officers will be invited to stop for a welcome hot drink and a chance to mingle with shoppers and staff.

The project, which supports the Home Office's Neighbourhood Policing Strategy, will provide a meeting place at the heart of communities where residents can have an informal chat with their local police officers and pick up information, support and advice along with their food shopping.

The Co-operative's regional loss prevention manager, Giles Jenkins, said: "We work closely with police forces across the country to help tackle problems of crime and anti-social behaviour in the communities we serve and initiatives like this are very important.

"Our partnership with Devon and Cornwall Constabulary aims to foster and strengthen relationships between local businesses, the community and the police; and in the process we hope it will be a deterrent to local criminals."

Assistant Chief Constable Paul Netherton added: "This is fantastic opportunity for the police to work in partnership with a major retailer. The Co-operative has many stores in Devon and Cornwall, which are situated in key business and community areas.

"Our officers will be able to engage with customers and staff in the stores while enjoying a refreshing break. It is essential that our staff are not only visible but make contact with the people they meet. This will give the police service an opportunity to gather information and

build professional relationships with the community.

"It is important that our staff have an opportunity for a rest break but in this case there are benefits to the police and wider community as the police stay within their neighbourhoods and have more time to talk and make a difference.


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