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Make the call and save lives

Make the call and save lives

Making a good call could stop someone you care about becoming a victim of crime or prevent crime happening in your community.

Crimestoppers, an independent charity that helps New Zealanders to fight crime by providing a simple anonymous channel to pass on information to the authorities, is hoping to encourage people to use the facility to do the right thing by family and friends.

Founder and Chairman of Crimestoppers New Zealand, John Perham, said: “While we know from the calls we receive and the feedback we gather, that many view Crimestoppers as a means to ‘nark’ or ‘dob in’ with the assurance of anonymity, our service is much more than that. Every call to the Crimestoppers freephone number 0800 555111 is answered by a professionally trained, security-cleared staff member every minute of the day.”

When information is received by Crimestoppers it is passed to Police without any caller or phone number details attached to it. The information is then carefully assessed by intelligence analysts to recommend appropriate courses of action for frontline police staff.

“In the last couple of years New Zealand Police has adopted an approach to crime that puts prevention before anything else. Police is doing a lot of work with other agencies to understand the causes of crime and take steps to prevent offending and victimisation, rather than just responding to events and enforcing the law. Crimestoppers plays a vital role in strengthening the prevention ethos,” said Mr Perham.

An example might be a young man known to be driving an unsafe vehicle; with relatives concerned that he is putting his own life and the lives of others at risk. Or it might be a woman or child who will continue to be a victim of unreported violence unless someone stands up, even anonymously, to highlight the risk. Armed with this information Police and other agencies have the ability to find out what is behind the behaviour and try to influence some change.

“We want people to pick up the phone to Crimestoppers confident that it is the right thing to do. While criminals want to describe Crimestoppers as a ‘nark’ hotline to keep the fear of retribution strong, it is actually a chance to be courageous; to change lives and to save lives.

“We have a number of examples where information provided has protected families and the wider community from harm. People need to ask themselves, not what will happen if I ring, but what will happen if I don't.”


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