The Parnell Business Association welcomes the announcement by Police Minister Poto Williams that the Government is investing in crime prevention for our small retailers, including the installation of bollards and other structures to protect against ram raids.
The $6 million pot from the Proceeds of Crime Fund will help tackle retail crime and will be welcomed by retailers, who will work closely with police to find solutions, but it’s not just a start to remedying the problem, says the chief executive of the Parnell Business Association (PBA). Cheryl Adamson.
“I look forward to further details on how the program will be rolled out. However, the police are already grossly under-resourced and the process outlined by the Minister seems endless. While we greatly respect the work done by the police, the PBA would like to see a simple and straightforward plan for applying for funding.
“The cost of ram raids can often run into the tens of thousands, depending on the level of damage done. We had several incidents at Parnell. For smaller retailers, it can take months to complete repairs. But it’s not just about replacing windows, internal security structures like grilles and shuttered doors have high replacement costs, and they still need extra protection like bollards, and they need it now!”
Demand for mooring bollards has increased with incidents of ram raids and some retailers are reporting contractors saying they may have to wait months for installation. PBA expects delivery to be a challenge, alongside due process and working with Auckland Transport and store owners.
Fortunately, Auckland Transport has said it will speed up investigations, but the process will involve working with owners to submit an application to install bollards before Auckland Transport can assess whether there will be a danger of hitting underground services. and non-obstructive placement during installation.
“We are already helping some of our companies with their requests. In many cases, English is not their first language and they often feel intimidated to apply to Council or Auckland Transport. So I really hope that the program will be put in place quickly and will help the retailers who have been affected in recent months.
“For dairies whose livelihood is their store, the costs involved can be daunting. Not to mention the vulnerability they must feel and there seems to be no consequence for the perpetrators,” Adamson said.
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