Young, tech-savvy media students are being sought to help the police identify law and order priorities for the community.
Inspector Peter Ferrie has been invited to attend a media session at Samuel Ward Academy in the hopes of recruiting young people to help the police find an alternative to the Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) meetings which came to an end earlier this year.
Insp Ferrie is hoping 16to17-year-olds will take to the task, using their IT and social media skills to help the police judge the community’s priorities.
“I want to find out from them what the most effective methods of engagement are for us to use,” said Insp Ferrie. “They know about a whole range of other methods of reaching out.”
Insp Ferrie will be looking to take on two to three young people to assist the police with what they’re calling a digital engagement scheme.
They will use social media such as Facebook and Twitter.
In exchange for their help, the students will gain experience working on an innovative community project that will set them apart when it comes to writing CVs for future jobs.
It is hoped the media session will take place at the school some time in the next couple of weeks before the school term finishes.
“It will be good for them,” added Insp Ferrie. “They’ll be able to say they’ve worked with the police on their digital strategy. We like to get the benefit of their expertise with new digital technologies.
“At the moment, since the SNT meetings finished, we don’t know a lot about how our policing is seen in the community, and that is not something I feel particularly comfortable about.”