This site has been set up with a view to providing Surrey Residents with as much information as possible regarding the increase of crime following Surrey CC's decision to turn off our street lights between midnight and 5am. We also need your help to force Surrey CC reverse their decision.
We believe that Surrey CC has put savings before public safety and in doing so the are putting Surrey Residents at risk.
I have been writing to Cllr David Hodge almost weekly since April 2017 following the switching off of street lights in March. I have been expressing my concerns re the possible rise in crime as a result of Surrey CC’s decision to turn the street lights off between midnight and 5am. I have been providing information re crimes in other areas around the country thought to be associated with street lights being turned off. Indeed in the ensuing months several councils have reversed their decisions and have in fact turned street lights back on following a sharp rise in crime. In my report I have also presented Cllr Hodge weekly comments from locals via my Facebook Group in respect of local crimes being committed.
Since April I have had only 3 direct responses from Cllr Hodge which were standard to say the least. They did not address my concerns nor answer my questions. As such I contacted Surrey Police with a freedom of information request for comparative data/figures re crimes committed between March to July 2015, 2016 and 2017 covering the hours between midnight and 5am. This shows that in 2016 there was an expected and anticipated rise in crime during these hours of between 2% and 3%. During the same period in 2017 however (since the street lights were turned off) the crime rate has risen 22%.
I have presented this information to Cllr Hodge by email however have had absolutely no response at all relating to this submission. I have also written to the Chief Commissioner of Surrey Police to request his comments however as yet I have had no response.
I now feel that it is time that the general public should be aware of this extreme rise in crime figures which I can only associate with the turning off of our street lights.
A Small Victory: On November 17th Cllr Kemp announced that all street lights in Surrey will now remain on until 1am. We feel that pressure from this campaign was partly responsible for this decision. We feel that this is a compromise but it is not acceptable as a long term solution.
What did Surrey CC do wrong?
The government and SCC policy on consultation was not followed, in fact the process followed appears to completely ignore the policies existence
The action taken by SSC on the back of the sham consultation did not actually reflect what was asked during the consultation process
The survey that SCC has used to justify their actions again is not credible. I have read it cover to cover and corresponded with the authors and even within the document (again all in the paper attached) they admit that statistically the dataset was incomplete and the paper lightly suggests, ie there is no real conclusion and it is at odds with every police department in the entire UK and all other studies we could find related to lighting and crime
Crime is out of control in Surrey and spiked since the scheme was implemented
Now to add insult to injury we have hired a highly paid Chief Executive at £232,683 (current role salary, but we all know KPMG partners earn a lot more than that so looking forward to seeing the actual salary when it is published next round) where other counties have and are considering dropping that role.