IN less than a year Insp Mohammed Rauf has seen his manpower double.
And he says this has directly led to a drop in recorded crime and a change in the public perception of the police.
“We have been fortunate to have gained staffing resources from other areas and now have a strong team which is really allowing us to create firm relationships with the local community,’’ he said.
“The community are and always will be our eyes and ears. No matter how many officers are in my team, we rely on intelligence from members of the public to respond to those who commit crime in Kirklees.
“I would rather people phoned us in good faith that they believe something is happening rather than ignore it and it turns out to be something we could have acted on.”
The boost in manpower break down has seen two extra PCSOs from 13 to 15 and police officers increase from nine to 16.
The team also have a number of designated neighbourhood investigators who deal with low level crime.
Insp Rauf added: “Having extra officers means each shop, religious organisation and school will have a PCSO or Pc assigned to them.
“This has worked really well and we are already noticing the difference from having a direct liaison linked to us.
“Obviously there will be times when their liaison is not available, but having the initial contact really helps build bridges.”
Setting out his priorities, he said: “Our number one challenge is tackling burglary. We have seen the number of burglaries drop but it still continues to be a problem in our area and is also a force wide issue.
“As a direct result, we have a focused on crime prevention and tackling the ‘it won’t happen to me’ mentality.”
“In order to help homeowners we have bought sash jammers for doors and windows to sell to residents at a reduced rate.
“We know that criminals are targeting PVC doors which have locks which can be easily removed.
“The jammers are just one way in which homeowners can enhance their security.
“It is obvious, but securing homes is often overlooked in the same way that items are often left on display in vehicles.
“I would encourage any homeowner and vehicle owner to take a personal responsibility for their property.
“Burglary is not an easily forgotten crime. The repercussions of being a victim of burglary can stay with someone for months afterwards.
“It is for these reasons we are prioritising it and looking at increasing patrols in areas where we know criminals are operating.
“Our other key focus is on thefts from vehicles and anti-social behaviour.”
Latest rolling figures show since April 2011 the number of recorded burglaries has dropped from 185 to 134 on Insp Rauf’s patch.
“This follows a downward trend and we are keen to work with our partners in the community to ensure we are using our resources as effectively as possible,” he said.
AREAS which come under Huddersfield North police include:
Ashbrow Ward – Bradley, Brackenhall, Deighton, Fartown, Fixby, Netheroyd Hill, Riddings, Sheepridge
Greenhead Ward – Birkby,Cowcliffe, Edgerton, Hillhouse, Marsh, Paddock
Lindley Ward – Birchencliffe, Lindley, Oakes and Salendine Nook
For more information on Neighbourhood Policing in your area go to http://www.westyorkshire.police.uk/ or toreport non-emergency crime phone 01484 436906.