Its not just what they takeIts what they leave behind - this is the message from Lancashire Police as they launch a month-long burglary campaign.
The aim is to highlight the devastating impact that burglary can have on victims of this crime and comes as part of Operation Julius, a countywide burglary crackdown focussed on preventing crime, targeting criminals and detecting burglaries.
The campaign will run across the county during the whole of August and includes posters, adverts, outdoor media and social media activity. Officers will also be doing extra patrols in hotspot areas and targeting known offenders.
Assistant Chief Constable Mark Bates said: Burglary is not a crime against the property but the person. It can have a truly devastating effect on how people feel in their own homes; often leaving that person feeling vulnerable, scared and anxious. It can also have a profound impact on the local community.
We know that more than one in three burglaries happen when a property has been left insecure; and during the summer months when the weather is nice, people are more inclined to take extra risks, by leaving a window open for instance.
This campaign is about raising awareness of the impact that a burglary can have on the victims and making people think no one ever considers that it could happen to them.
We want to encourage people to take some simple steps to help themselves and reduce their chances of becoming a victim. The message from the campaign is clear: Be wise at home. Keep your windows and doors locked.
We also want people to feel more informed about what is going on in their local area and what their local neighbourhood policing teams are doing to address issues; and I would therefore urge people to sign up to our free messaging system, In The Know, where they can receive regular updates, direct from their local team.
The campaign poster designs feature four scenarios, including an elderly man unable to relax in his home and a young child at playtime still haunted by the knowledge that her home was burgled.
Clive Grunshaw, Police and Crime Commissioner for Lancashire, said: "Tackling crime is one of my key priorities in my police and crime plan and that is why I am supporting this campaign.
"Prevention is always better than cure and so I think it's essential we inform Lancashire residents of steps they can take to help stop them becoming a victim of such an invasive crime.
"Lancashire is a safe place to live but we cannot be complacent and we must continue to take action to combat burglary so that everybody can feel safe in their own home."
To report anything suspicious please call 101 or 999 in an emergency.
For more information about the campaign and how to protect your home, outbuildings and valuables please visit: www.lancashire.police.uk/burglary .
To sign up to Lancashire Constabularys free messaging service, In The Know, and receive news and updates about crime in your area by email, text or voice message please visit: www.stayintheknow.co.uk
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