Rural and farming crime is to be a key theme for the incoming Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Policing and Community Safety Partnership.
The Deputy President of the Ulster Farmers Union, Mr Barclay Bell, and the President of the Young Farmers Clubs of Ulster, Roberta Simmons, have both welcomed the decision.
The Policing and Community Safety Partnership, which formally comes into being later this month, has plans to engage with local rural and farming communities help address their concerns about crime, crime prevention and making people feel safer.
The PCSP was constituted on June 25 and will have political and independent members as well as representatives from seven key statutory agencies (designated members).
Some of the new members are from a rural or farming background, and are well aware of the impact crime can have on rural communities.
They will be keen to find ways to work with local people make the countryside in the area safer to live, work and do business in.
Mr Bell who farms in the Rathfriland area and Miss Simmons said: “Rural crime is one of the Agri/Rural Priorities that the YFCU has set with the organisation for this year (2015/16), so we’re happy to help in any way.
“Young farmers and young people who live in our rural communities can play a vital role in ensuring that advice and support for addressing and preventing crime is passed on.
“They are also well placed to identify the most effective ways to engage with the communities in which they live.
“An event to bring together the four Young Farmers Clubs in the new Council area would be a good starting point.”
Inspector Leslie Badger added: “Rural crime has always been high on the policing agenda in the Banbridge area and we have worked closely with the PCSP, UFU and rural communities over the past few years to raise awareness of rural crime and to promote crime prevention measures.
“With rural crime highlighted as a key theme for the incoming PCSP, we will have the opportunity to build on and develop relationships with rural communities and continue to prevent, detect and deter this type of crime.”
For further information the PCSP Team can be contacted on 0300 0300 900 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org.