New street lighting across the Borough may remain unpopular but one councillor has hit out at unsubstantiated claims of spikes in crime as a result.
UUP’s Doug Beattie has criticised those who have “perpetuated fear amongst certain groups of individuals”.
“There has been much said about the new street lighting in the Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council area,” he said.
“For many, the street lighting remains unpopular for various reasons and this must be addressed by local political representatives.
“Yet recently some individuals have been perpetuating fear amongst certain groups of people in the Portadown area purely because of the street lighting. This leads to anxiety, confusion and even prevents people from leaving their homes based purely on unsupported statements.”
He added: “It is important firstly to point out there has been no increase or spike in crime of any kind due to the new street lighting no matter how unpopular they are.”
However perception of safety is important and the PSNI advice to women remains as follows:
- Cover up expensive-looking jewellery
- Carry your bag close to you with the clasp facing inwards.
- Carry your house keys in your pocket. If someone grabs your bag, let it go, do not get hurt. Your safety is more important than your property.
- When walking alone carry a personal attack alarm. Carry it in your hand so you can use it immediately to scare off an attacker.
- Arrange transport home in advance. Do not go out alone. Don’t get isolated from your friends.
- Stay in well-lit areas and don’t wander in areas you are unsure of.
- Never leave your drink unattended or accept a drink from someone who you don’t know or trust.
- If you feel drunk, dizzy or disorientated seek help from a trusted friend or a member of bar staff.
- Consider carefully whether to leave with someone you have just met.
Anyone who feels they need a personal Attack Alarm can get one FREE at the UUP Advice Centre on Bridge Street Portadown or through their local Councillor, PCSP or PSNI. If anyone is concerned for their safety please contact the PSNI.