Being safe out and about

This article was written by a young person from Wigan.

One of my friends always used to make me cross over to the other side of the road with her if she saw any group of lads walking down the street toward us. Although I thought it a bit strange at the time, I now see that she was worried for our safety.

How safe do you feel in Wigan?

Wigan’s largest problem, according to the UK Crime Stats website, is anti-social behaviour. Although not always an aggressive crime, it can cause people to feel worried and intimidated. Using a crime rates comparison website and inputting random place names, I found that Wigan has a higher anti-social behaviour rate than many others.

The best advice for staying safe is to not walk around alone, especially not in the evenings. Until a few months ago, I always thought Wigan was a very safe place and that the type of crime you see on TV shows never happens so close to home…which turned out to be naïve of me.

I read in the local paper that literally two or three streets away from where I live, a man had been stabbed in front of his very young son in the early hours of the morning. After reading about this, I have always been more careful where I go and when.

Tips for staying safe

  • Stay in groups, but not in groups so large that you may actually feel intimidating to other people
  • Avoid walking in lonely alleyways, darker areas or places you have heard are not particularly safe
  • Do not carry around knives or other weapons for self-protection. If you feel intimidated, go to the police they are there to protect the public
  • Make sure your friends are OK to get home safely when you’ve been out and about. Text each other when you get home to check you have all got home OK.

There are other aspects to feeling safe, such as feeling safe at house parties, online, in drug-related situations and relationships.

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