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Council and police support new crime fighting app

Published: Wednesday, 9 November 2022

Havering Council has joined forces with police and the Safer Neighbourhood Board in supporting the launch of a new app for the neighbourhood watch scheme, OWL.

OWL (Online Watch Link) makes it easier for residents and communities across the borough to keep up to speed with crimes and anti-social behaviour in their areas.

They can report it, and hear directly about the action being taken.

Following the online scheme introduced earlier this year, residents can now report and receive alerts as part of a mobile app.

This is run by Direct Path Solutions, a flagship police initiative and which is security accredited.

Residents and businesses can download it for free.

They will receive a notification as soon as a new alert is sent by their local police officers or council community safety officers. 

All the information is on a secure platform and the aim is to improve the sharing of this information between Police, Council and safer neighbourhood groups.

Councillor Ray Morgon, Leader of Havering Council, said:

“Along with the police, we are pleased to be supporting this app.

"It is another way the OWL scheme can reach our residents and enable them to report anti-social behaviour and crime.

“It also means they get to know what is going on where they live and be aware of issues on their doorstep. 

“The scheme also means working even closer with our neighbourhood watch groups and other community groups, who are also our eyes and ears out there.”

Police are running the scheme across Havering as well as in neighbouring boroughs, Barking and Dagenham and Redbridge.

Residents and businesses will receive alerts about anti-social behaviour and crimes including burglaries and vehicle crime and through the app you can:

  • get the latest scam alerts from ActionFraud
  • report a crime online or find out how to get in touch with the police in other ways
  • translate an alert to any language (if your phone’s default language isn't English)
  • discover who your local police officers are, your nearest police station, and what the priorities are for your area
  • get information if you want to join your local Neighbourhood Watch scheme

Inspector Dave Holgate, lead for Partnership and Prevention, for the Police’s East Area BCU (Basic Command Unit), said:

 “I am extremely pleased that the use of OWL has been extended to include the mobile app.

"This will enable the community to reach out to local Police and Local Authority partners, facilitating a safer and more connected borough.

"Thank you to all those involved in making this happen.”

Go to the OWL website to get the app