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Crime Prevention and Community Safety Since COVID-19

It’s no shock that 2020 has been a year of uncertainty and anxiety for many, with everyone having to adapt to lifestyle changes to protect the health and safety of themselves and loved ones. But amongst all the changes due to COVID-19, what impact has this had on crime rates across the UK? Below, we explore the impacts the pandemic has had on crime rates.

First Lockdown: Fall in Crime Rates

When the first nationwide lockdown was introduced back in March 2020, people were spending the majority of their time at home to keep themselves and others safe from the coronavirus. Due to the strict lockdown rules, it’s no surprise that there was a reduction in crime rates. The BBC reports that the overall police-recorded crime during the first lockdown was 25% lower in April and 20% lower in May compared with the same months in 2019.

Research from the Office for National Statistics revealed that the fall in crime rates spanned across many crimes, but it was theft offences that showed the largest reduction. In April and May 2020, there were almost half the amount of thefts compared to the same months in 2019. ONS explains this is due to the reduction in opportunities for theft in public places and the closure of the night-time economy.

As Lockdown Eased, Crime Rates Rose Again

Across the UK crimes rates started to increase again following the ease of restrictions in the summer months as people began a new normal and businesses opened back up into the late evenings. In London alone, crime rose significantly following the ease of the lockdown rules, which is identified by data collected by the Metropolitan Police. The Met's crime data dashboard shows the crime rate across the 32 London boroughs in a month-on-month graph. As you can see on the line graph, the rate of offences is almost back to the average number of offences.

Second Lockdown: What to Expect

Now the second lockdown has been announced, will we see a reduction in crime quite like the first time around? Although people will once again be spending more time at home, criminals now know what to expect and in the face of a familiar crisis, may look to exploit the situation. The second lockdown has been expected, so everyone has had a chance to prepare, including criminals. For this reason, crime prevention and community safety are of paramount importance during this time. If you are leaving your premises with little to no personnel present or you will be spending a lot of time home alone, then it’s worth considering how to ensure the safety of yourself, your employees and your premises.

How to Improve Crime Prevention and Community Safety

There are plenty of ways to increase community safety and help prevent crime during a time that’s already filled with anxiety and worry, including hiring professional security guards to guard your premises and be vigilant in looking out for any suspicious behaviour. If you’re concerned about community safety, whether you own a residential area or you manage a gated community, then hiring mobile security patrols will provide some peace of mind. At 1st Class Protection, our security guards are highly trained to identify and react to any signs of intrusion or potential threats. Similarly, if you own premises in London that will need to be left unattended in lockdown, then our trained team can be your eyes and ears whilst you’re safely working from home.

If you’re interested in the ways to improve crime prevention and community safety, please get in touch with us today to learn more about our security services.

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