POLICE in Newtownabbey, Antrim, Carrickfergus and Lisburn (D District), in partnership with the four local Policing and Community Safety Partnerships, have developed an information guide aimed at helping young people make good choices and stay out of trouble.
The ‘Young Person’s Guide to Policing, Safety and the Law in Northern Ireland’ was officially launched at Mossley Mill on Friday, October 5.
The 39-page colour booklet deals with a range of issues and situations young people may face in the modern world. It offers information on how a criminal record can affect your life, what types of behaviours can constitute criminal offences and ASBOs. There’s also advice on drug and alcohol abuse and keeping safe both online and when out and about, as well as issues around bullying and suicide.
D District Community Safety Inspector Colin Audley explained: “We have produced this guide in partnership with our local PCSPs, the Department of Justice and Policing Board to give young people straightforward information that will empower them to sensibly navigate situations and issues they are likely to face as teenagers.
“The guide is not an instruction manual. It doesn’t seek to dictate how young people should live their lives or tell them how they should react to different social challenges.
“Around 23,000 copies of the booklet will be distributed to post primary schools throughout the District and local Neighbourhood Policing Teams will also visit local doctor and dentist surgeries to make copies of the guide available in public waiting areas.
“We understand that there are many dangers and temptations out there for young people and as police officers we know that youngsters need all the available information in order to make good choices.
“It is hoped that this guide provides all of the necessary information to enable young people to make the right decisions for them.”
Welcoming the launch of the publication, councillor Robert Hill, Chair of Newtownabbey Policing and Community Safety Partnership, commented: “The PCSP is confident that this booklet will be a useful tool for getting important messages out to young people across the borough and will help us to keep our young people safe and well informed.”
Inspector Audley added: “The Young Person’s Guide is evidence of our continuing commitment to working alongside our young people, to breaking down barriers and dispelling misconceptions.
“We want our young people to feel empowered and have the knowledge to confidently face whatever challenges life throws up. It is important that we let them know that police are here for them and we are here to help.”