Green Island burglaries prompt meeting

After a spate of burglaries the Green Island community is being asked to come together and look out for their neighbours.

Earlier this month houses in the Green Island area were broken into and attempts were made to break into other houses. Green Island School was also broken into and items were taken.

Neighbourhood Support Otago, the police and Green Island School have got together and are holding an information night for people interested in joining a Neighbourhood Support group.

Green Island Community Constable Fred Jansen said the burglaries were a blip on the radar for Green Island, which had a low level of crime and a high sense of community.

''Back in the old days you would tell your neighbour if you were going away. Now I don't know if many people know their neighbours well at all.''

It was not about people spying on their neighbours, it was about being an ''extra set of eyes'' and noticing anything suspicious, Const Jansen said.

Police had increased their patrols in the area along with other groups such as community patrols and Neighbourhood Support, but if people were looking out for their neighbours it made everyone's job easier, he said.

''It's about strengthening the neighbourhood - people feel better when they live on a nice street where people look out for each other.''

Neighbourhood Support regional manager Sarah Hexamer said the group had decided to run the information evening to see if there was support for a Neighbourhood Support group in the area.

A similar group was set up in Fairfield two years ago after a spate of burglaries and had worked, Mrs Hexamer said.

Green Island School already had a junior Neighbourhood Support group and Mrs Hexamer said she hoped parents already knew what Neighbourhood Support was all about and would get behind the idea.

''It's about getting together and saying `let's stop this from happening in the community','' she said.

The Neighbourhood Support information meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 11 at the Green Island School library, starting at 7pm.


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