Humberside Police offer to form a motorcycle theft focus group at MAG’s Fight Motorcycle Theft meeting in Hull. Humberside Police and Crime Commissioner, Jonathan Evison, and Operation Yellowfin lead, Chief Inspector Derek Hussain, are both backing this engagement having heard the concerns of local riders at the meeting.
The meeting, held in Hull on 21st October, was the fifth in a series of meetings being organised by the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) around the country. A turnout of over 40 riders at the meeting saw some honest opinions being expressed about the fear and intimidation faced by local motorcyclists. Many expressed their unwillingness to continue riding into the city due to the level of criminal activity targeted at them. Riders expressed a desire to feel safe when riding and parking in the city. Emotions were high with perceptions around insufficient police response and fears that Operation Yellowfin is an operation “in name only”.
Both the PCC and CI Hussain stressed the importance of fully reporting crimes, intimidation and suspicious activity, if necessary through Crimestoppers, an entirely anonymous reporting channel. Attendees were also encouraged to sign up to Humberside’s My Community Alert to receive real-time messages about incidents happening in their neighbourhood.
The offer made by CI Hussain – and fully supported by the PCC in the meeting – was to form a focus group to enable better lines of communication, and a route for the riding community to ensure that their concerns are being taken seriously and leading to a robust response.
Speaking after the meeting Jonathan Evison said:
“These engagements are always important because we haven’t got all the answers. There was a very, very passionate response from the people in the room, a lot of passion within the questions and a lot of information. I have a perception, and the participants in the discussion had a perception and it wasn’t the same, so we need to work out how we actually can come together on that. There were some good suggestions that came out from the floor and also from the panel and I think we can move on very positively from this.
If you want to know what the problem is, and also what the solutions are, you need to talk to the people who have the lived experience in these areas. I come from industry so the people you talk to are the people that are actually doing the jobs. In this scenario it’s the actual bikers, they know what the problem is, and often they know what the solutions are as well. Now, if those solutions are not palatable, because they are quite a robust group of individuals, we have to find a workaround or do something different, but a lot of them are common sense and we need to listen to that, and we need to implement that. And collectively, we’re going to form a group to be able to do that.”
Chief Inspector Hussain, speaking about the meeting said:
“Absolutely fantastic, you got a really good group of people, I think about 40 to 45 attended. We had a really honest conversation to understand the feeling of being a victim of crime. My view is you have got absolute commitment from Humberside Police. I have exchanged quite a few contacts already, we’re going to set up a focus group together, and we’re going to start really working together to build up the confidence again that we need to see.”
Crimestoppers are an independent charity who allow members of the public to anonymously report people involved in criminality in their neighbourhood. The information is then passed onto authorities to support them in tackling criminality and bring offenders to justice. You can call the charity on 0800 555 111 or report incidents online here
My Community Alert is a free messaging system operated by Humberside Police, Humberside Fire & Rescue Service, and Humberside Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner, giving live information about incidents happening in your area: https://www.mycommunityalert.co.uk/