Press release

Police Now officers working to keep the public safe this Christmas

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Police Now officers working to keep the public safe this Christmas

Thursday 23 December 2021

Police Now officer joins Operation Silent Night to tackle night-time disorder in Birmingham city centre 

Police Constable Nilufar (Nelly) Ali of West Midlands Police, who recently graduated from Police Now’s National Graduate Leadership Programme, has been working alongside her colleagues to tackle night-time disorder in Birmingham city centre.

PC Ali has been working night shifts as part of Operation Silent Night, which has seen high visibility and plain clothes officers patrolling the city centre to safeguard the public and prevent criminality in the run up to Christmas.

Officers have also been patrolling Frankfurt Christmas Market to keep the public safe this Christmas, as part of a wider force operation Project Servator. The project aims to disrupt criminal activity, including terrorism, with specially trained officers deployed to spot people who may be about to commit a crime.

PC Ali said: “The operation is largely about being visible to the public and making sure we are on hand to deal with any disorder that breaks out.

“For example, on my first night on the operation I made an arrest of a person wanted for assault, and I have been safeguarding women leaving clubs late at night to make sure they get home safely.   

“It has been tiring but really rewarding to be working in the city centre alongside my colleagues, protecting members of our community as many aim to celebrate this festive season in a safe manner.”

Police Now officer joins Operation Elf to make local town centres in Rochdale District safer

Police Constable Olivia Main and Police Constable Khizar Akbar, who joined Greater Manchester Police (GMP) this summer via Police Now’s National Graduate Leadership Programme, are tackling shoplifting and crime alongside their colleagues in Rochdale as part of ‘Operation Elf’ this Christmas.

Operation Elf is a month-long operation aimed at tackling shoplifting and keeping visitors to Rochdale, Middleton and Heywood town centres safe over the festive season.

The operation sees an increase in high-visibility officers located in hotspot areas across the town centres, with the aim of deterring potential offenders and criminal activity, providing reassurance to residents, and building positive relationships with the community.

The operation also includes plain clothes officers patrolling the town centres, working to catch opportunistic offenders.

PC Main, PC Akbar and their colleagues at GMP are being supported by a range of local partners during the operation, including the council, Business Improvement District Rangers, Street Pastors and local businesses. Together, they will work to prevent crime through intelligence sharing and by working with CCTV operators and security staff.

PC Olivia Main said: “I am really pleased to be working alongside my colleagues as part of Operation Elf, helping to protect and serve my local community this Christmas.

“This is my first Christmas on the job, and it is hard being away from my family over the holidays. However, the reality is that police work never stops and we – alongside our colleagues in other public sector and blue light organisations – must keep working over the festive season in order to keep people safe.

“To all those who celebrate the holiday seasons, I want to wish everyone in Rochdale, and across Greater Manchester, a happy Christmas.”

Sergeant Danny Shirazi from GMP’s Rochdale district, said: “We want people to feel safe visiting our local town centres whatever time of year they visit, and Operation Elf helps us do this by ensuring we have a higher number of officers patrolling at what we know to be a busy time of year.

“I hope that our local residents feel reassured by the presence of our officers and that them and any would-be offenders understand that we will not tolerate any type of criminality in the Rochdale district.

“As people flock to centre, I would ask them to help us keep them safe, by following simple steps such as keeping valuables out of easy reach, staying vigilant when using cash machines and not leaving your newly purchased items on show in your car.

“On behalf of everyone at GMP Rochdale, have a wonderful and safe Christmas and New Year.” 

Police Now officer joins Operation Kraken to tackle city centre disorder in Sunderland this Christmas

Police Constable Chelsea Swift, participant on Police Now’s National Graduate Leadership Programme in Northumbria Police, has been working alongside her colleagues in Sunderland to tackle city centre disorder.

After its resounding success in 2019 – which led to a 16 per cent decrease in city centre crime – Operation Kraken has been relaunched and is running through until Christmas Eve.

The operation sees increased police patrols and intervention from both uniformed and plain-clothed officers to tackle all city centre criminality in order to protect shoppers and businesses, and ensure Sunderland remains a vibrant and safe city to visit.

The initiative is being run in partnership with the Bridges, Sunderland Business Improvement District (BID) and Sunderland City Council.

PC Swift said “I am really enjoying working on Op Kraken alongside my colleagues on the city centre neighbourhood team, in order to keep my community safe over the festive season.

“So far, I have engaged with members of my community as well as all our city centre partners. 

“By showing a high visibility presence, we are hoping to deter shoplifters and thieves, and proactively tackle any pockets of anti-social behaviour. The public are always happy to see officers on foot patrol! 

“I have also had the opportunity to build relationships with community organisations such as the council anti-social behaviour enforcement officers and Sunderland BID. 

“We are only able to run these kinds of operations with the cooperation, teamwork and dedication of our local partners in the community and, though it can be hard working over the festive season, it’s so important that we all continue to work together keep our communities safe.”

Sergeant Maria Ord, who spearheaded the operation alongside the city centre neighbourhood team, said: “In recent years we have enjoyed some fantastic results through our dedicated Christmas operation which has included a significant reduction in city centre crime.

“That is the aim once again as we work hand-in-hand with our city centre partners and the public to ensure the city remains a hassle-free and safe environment, which allows families to enjoy everything this great city has to offer in the lead-up to Christmas.

“You will see an increased police presence in the city – we are there to keep you safe, engage positively with you and also respond to any pockets of disorder.

“Anyone who comes into Sunderland with the intention of causing trouble or committing crime can expect to be dealt with robustly – and face the prospect of spending the festive period behind bars.

“This type of operation is only possible through fantastic teamwork and dedication, and we look forward to hopefully seeing the positive results over the coming weeks.”

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