Witnesses in Islington told to stand up and be counted

A NEW campaign has been launched calling on witnesses of street violence in Islington and Hackney to stand up, be counted and report incidents to the police.

The charity Witness Confident is launching the campaign SPARKLE after it surveyed 400 people in Islington and Hackney and found one in three people had witnessed or been a victim of street violence.

Witness Confident, which is based at Highbury Corner, will be promoting the message to schools, shops, community and faith groups, piloting an interactive Google map, working with the police and civic leaders; and providing free legal advice to people in the area who witness or who suffer street violence.

Workers for the charity have produced a report called Get Up, Stand Up after speaking with 200 people in both boroughs.

The report found 96 per cent of respondents said witnesses should call attention, 85 per cent of respondents said witnesses should use their camera phones to photograph the suspect or the scene and 98 per cent of respondents said witnesses should call 999.

But the report also revealed that two out of three respondents were concerned they would not be helped if they were mugged.

SPARKLE campaign director Guy Dehn said: “It is clear local people want to end the walk-on-by culture and make the streets safer for us all.

Most Read

“This campaign is here to support them and to encourage people to be confident witnesses.

“This simple message will deter opportunistic crime and as more of us get up, stand up and speak up, we will help ensure the police catch the right offender.”

To sign up to the campaign, readers are asked to email help@witnessconfident.org.