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PSNI Begin Operation Seasons Greetings

THE Police Service of Northern Ireland has commenced its annual operation which aims to keep people safe in the run-up to Christmas.

Operation Season’s Greetings will ensure that officers and staff are deployed across all districts in Northern Ireland including Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon to deter and detect criminality and provide visible reassurance to the public.

Superintendent Kellie McMillan said: “I am pleased to announce the start of Operation Season’s Greetings. This year will see a focus on public safety across a range of priorities including retail, roads and transport, safety in the home and your safety when out and about and socialising. We are working with partners such as Translink and Retail NI to provide guidance and ensure everyone stays safe and feels safe.

“We will be conducting patrols across Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon with the aim of preventing and detecting crime and reassuring communities of our aim to keep people safe.

“Our Safe Transport Team is also working closely with Translink to ensure passenger and staff safety across the public transport network at this busy time of year. Translink will also provide a range of additional late night services to assist people to get safely home. 

 “Of course we can be much more effective if we work together, so I would encourage people to think ahead this festive season and consider how they can help prevent becoming the victim of a crime.  On the PSNI website (www.psni.police.uk/christmas) there is a range of useful crime prevention and safety advice.

“Whether you are planning a festive night out, considering shopping online, concerned about the best way to secure your home or if you are just not sure of the best way to contact the police, there is a wealth of information on our website.

“Please also consider those who may be particularly vulnerable, or do not have access to the PSNI website. If you know someone like this, please consider how you could help, or who is best placed to provide help, whether the police or another agency, group or department.

“This year our operation will have a particular focus on violence against women and girls therefore we will seek to increase our presence in nightlife areas and work with the hospitality industry and other partners to improve safety in public spaces.

“We will also continue to take steps to support victims of domestic abuse. In the past we have seen an increase in domestic abuse reports over the Christmas period and we want all victims to know that we care, that they matter and that we are here to help. If you need the police, please call us on 101, or 999 in an emergency,” added Superintendent McMillan.

Ian Campbell, Translink Director of Service Operations, said of Operation Season’s Greetings: “We’re encouraging everyone across Northern Ireland to use public transport this festive season for safe, convenient and great value journeys whether it’s for shopping, socialising or some festive entertainment.

“We want everyone to enjoy the busy lead-up to Christmas and will be operating additional late-night bus, coach and train services to help people get home safely and in comfort. Our staff will be working hard to keep everyone on the move, often driving in heavy traffic or managing busy stations and platforms, so we would ask everyone to support and respect our teams.

“We will also be working closely with the Police Service of Northern Ireland and its Safe Transport Team to ensure the safety of our staff and customers and would encourage everyone to check our website or social media channels to find out more about our Christmas travel package and to plan their festive journeys.”

Glyn Roberts Retail NI Chief Executive said: “This is the most important time of the year for our local retail sector. We urge consumers to stay safe, be vigilant of shop lifters, plan their shopping trips and be kind with hardworking retail staff.

“We also appeal to our members to work with the police to ensure shoppers and staff are safe this festive season.”

For more information on the Police Service of Northern Ireland go to – https://www.psni.police.uk/

ENDS

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