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Bristol Safer Homes Project 

Location: UK » South West » BS

Bristol City Council is planning to slash funding for its Safer Homes Project, cutting £150k from its £250k budget in 2011/12.

The Safer Homes Project is funded by the council and managed by the police. The scheme helps protect victims and potential victims of crime and their homes. Houses that have been burgled will often be targetted again, but after the Safer Homes carpenters have made the houses more secure, this risk is reduced from 11 percent of homes suffering a repeat break-in to less than one percent.

Each Safer Homes van is driven by a Home Office crime prevention-trained carpenter, who can fit basic security improvements such as bolts, chains, viewers and smoke alarms to households. The vans aim to secure 625 properties each – giving a target of 5,000 a year.

The service has previously been offered free of charge to victims of crime, potential victims and those living in crime hotspots. The scheme also helps victims of hate crime and domestic abuse.

However, the proposed funding cut will mean that the service will move from universal to targeted provision, based on need and vulnerability. The current fleet of eight Safer Homes vans will be halved to four.

The council says the cuts will not affect domestic violence or hate crime victims, who remain a priority.

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