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Dagenham families petition council for CCTV

PUBLISHED: 12:46 10 March 2009 | UPDATED: 09:46 11 August 2010

FAMILIES living in Village ward petitioned the council for extra CCTV after their cars and homes were damaged by vandals. Neighbours living in Church Street, Dagenham collected 137 signatures and presented their pleas to the assembly last week. They want

FAMILIES living in Village ward petitioned the council for extra CCTV after their cars and homes were damaged by vandals.

Neighbours living in Church Street, Dagenham collected 137 signatures and presented their pleas to the assembly last week.

They want CCTV in their road to catch those damaging cars and committing general antisocial behaviour.

However council officers said the cost of installing another camera would be £25,000 and there is currently no budget for additional CCTV.

Sharon Laver spoke on behalf of the community in Church Street.

She said: "I would like to thank Councillors Lee and Phil Waker who have been fantastic.

"When I first spoke to a councillor about the problems it was Liam Smith and he basically told me to just move.

"The trouble started nine years ago and there has been a considerable amount of vandalism to cars and houses.

"It is a small minority of causing the damage and not everyone can afford to pay for it.

"We appreciate the fact that the council has boarded up around some waste ground near our homes but we really need CCTV."

The antisocial behaviour team has been working closely with families in the ward as well as police and councillors.

CCTV that is already in place outside a pub in Church Street has been set on rotation so that it now sees further down the street.

A major problem seems to be that people are not reporting vandalism to the police.

Councillor Lee Waker said: "It may not seem the request for cameras is needed but these streets are in the centre of Dagenham.

"There are lots of alleyways and cut-throughs which vandals can disappear down and be out of the area quickly.

"The people committing these offences are making a mockery - they think they are untouchable."

It was felt that extra police patrols are needed in the area during the evenings.

Executive member for community safety, Val Rush, said she would raise the issue in her next meeting with borough commander, Ch Supt Dave Reed.

Leader of the opposition, Bob Bailey, felt installing more CCTV was not the answer to this problem.

He said: "I think CCTV infringes on our freedom and does not deal with antisocial behaviour which is a symptom of an underlying problem.

"What we need is a campaign in schools to teach children about the cost of vandalism.


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