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20 July, 2017

North Yorkshire Police’s approach to tackling rural crime seen as ‘good practice’ by National Farmers Union

A new NFU report suggests improvements need to be made in the way police forces across the country treat rural crime, following news that it costs farmers more than £40 million a year. But amidst the worrying findings, the NFU sites cites North Yorkshire Police’s approach to tackling rural crime as ‘good practice’.

The report suggests there is currently no standard protocol across police forces for combatting rural crime, with some not treating it as serious crime, meaning criminals have begun to travel long distances to target farm businesses.

In highlighting examples, the NFU is now looking to the Government to take the lead on sharing working methods and successful initiatives, such as rural task forces, to ensure a coordinated and consistent approach to rural crime, nationally.

Following the news, Julia Mulligan, North Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, congratulated North Yorkshire Police for being at the forefront of best practice when it comes to policing a large, rural population.

She said: “The report states that police forces must make rural crime a priority and I completely agree, that is why in 2015, as Chair of the National Rural Crime Network (NRCN), I conducted the largest ever rural policing survey, and the results were stark. The research found that crime in rural areas often went unreported and levels of satisfaction and trust in policing were considerably lower than in the urban areas.

“Following the survey, we launched our Rural Policing Strategy to tackle the problem head on. The fact that, as part of this strategy, we have one of the largest rural crime task forces in the country shows how seriously the issue is being taken by North Yorkshire Police, a force that is determined to meet the needs of our rural communities.

“The NFU is asking Government and the Home Office to ensure increased and fairer funding for rural policing, and this is something that I have been campaigning for. Rural forces look set to lose out financially as Government thinking is skewed in favour of urban areas. As Brexit raises questions over future funding, myself and Police and Crime Commissioners representing other rural areas are keen that the Government gives rural forces a fair deal.”

To find out how North Yorkshire Police tackle rural crime visit https://northyorkshire.police.uk/what-we-do/tackling-crime/rural-cross-border-crime/