Monday, July 12, 2004

Police fail business community

A survey published this week by the Federation of Small Businesses confirmed the widening gap between the police and the business community.

The survey, produced by Strathclyde University for the FSB, reporting on the barriers to business growth in the UK, identified police inactivity as one key barriers.

Over fifty percent of businesses owners surveyed had been victims of crime and, crucially, 36 percent of those made no report to the police. They stated that to do so would not achieve anything.

Unwillingness to report crimes was also linked to a negative view of the police and the judicial system. A full 25 percent thought that the police would not be able to find the criminals and 20 percent believed that the police were not interested in pursuing their crimes.

Interestingly, the cost of individual losses was not always high, but losses of time and profit were still significant. In the absence of police action and support, businesses were forced to spend on increased crime prevention measures such as CCTV, static guards and alarms.

At least one business sector is benefitting, therefore - the crime prevention industry. But the other major growth area is dissatisfaction with the police 'service'.

However, with so few crimes being reported, you can bet that the police are preening themselves on how they are managing to keep crime rates down.


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