Crime and personal safety
If you have been the victim of a crime, you should contact the Police – that’s what they are there for. In an emergency dial 999. To contact the Police in a non-emergency call 101 which will put you through to the local police force (North Yorkshire Police if you are in York)
Supporting Victims offer emotional support and practical help to all victims of crime including information on police and court procedures, compensation and insurance through the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. They can speak to you over the phone, visit you at home, or you can make an appointment to see them at their office. The service is free and confidential and you don’t have to report the crime to the police to get support.
For information about domestic violence, rape or abuse, see here.
Keeping safe… on the streets:
Tragically, several people lose their lives in the rivers Ouse and Foss in York every year. Many of these deaths are of young people. Please take care of yourself and your friends when near the river, especially if people are drinking, and plan how you are going to get home safely after a night out. You could save someone’s life – or your own.
- When you are going out late, arrange a lift or taxi before you go. Make sure someone knows when you are expected back
- Don’t hitch-hike or take lifts from someone you’ve only just met
- If you have to walk at night, keep to well lit streets. Walk on the side that faces the traffic. If you think you are being followed, head for the nearest busy place
- Carry your keys in your pocket, in case your bag is stolen
- The most important thing is your safety. If someone tries to grab your bag, let it go. If someone tries to attack you, run away if you can. Don’t stay to face up to them
- Most mobile phones will allow you to call 999 even if you have no credit left, or seem to have a flat battery
- Add details of a family member or friend under ‘ICE’ (‘In Case of Emergency’) in your phone contacts
Mobile phones are a target for thieves. Always use a PIN code, if you have one. Typing *#06# into your phone will give you the phone’s unique IMEI number which you can register on immobilise.com The number can be used to prohibit use of your phone if lost or stolen. See also reportmyloss.com
Keeping safe… at home:
- Think about the security of your home. Fit window locks and a proper mortice lock on the front door, not just a Yale-type lock. If you live in rented accommodation, talk to your landlord if you don’t think the security is good enough
- Never leave a key hidden outside and especially not somewhere obvious e.g. under the doormat
- Ask to see an ID card when officials call. Phone their local office to check if you are in doubt
- If you think someone has broken in during the night, switch on a light and make some noise. Never go to confront an intruder. Phone the police as soon as you can
- Put expensive possessions out of sight from windows. Get a DIY kit to mark them with your postcode. Get a decent D-type lock for your bike and lock it to something fixed. Also, see above about immobilise.com
- If you’ve had something stolen or lost something valuable to you, report it to the police. You can also report it online at reportmyloss.com – a police endorsed website.
Keeping safe… online:
For more information about keeping safe online, look at thinkuknow.co.uk or getsafeonline.org. ‘Get safe online’ has advice about e.g. security of mobile devices, social networking sites, online auctions, virus software, email, spam and identity theft, ticket scams etc. Although aimed at younger teen users, ‘think u know’ has useful advice on handling online relationships and putting personal images online. You can also report online – for example if you are concerned about someone grooming, or about abuse or deceptive behaviour. See also Time 2… Project.