TAYSIDE Police has become the first force in Scotland to introduce an ‘app’ to help improve its community policing initiatives.
A revolutionary step forward in community engagement, the smartphone app will allow the public to see what community officers are doing in their neighbourhoods, as well as keeping them abreast of the latest Tayside Police news.
Crime statistics will also be available to view and people will also have the opportunity to engage with officers through social media sites.
The step is the latest in a series of measures to make Tayside Police more accessible online and through social media such as Facebook and Twitter. Many officers have been ‘Tweeting on the beat’ for more than a year and the number increased recently after more than 70 officers were issued with smartphones. Around 30,000 people visit force’s website every month with more than a third of those from mobile devices. As of November 30 its Facebook page had attracted 25,503 ‘likes’ and 87,000 people viewed content from the page in the week leading up to November 30.
Tayside Police Deputy Chief Constable Gordon Scobbie, who is the national lead for social media within UK policing, said: “Tayside residents can now use the app on their smart phones to see what their community officers are doing in their local area, as well as getting a snapshot of current operational policing issues and commitments as they happen. Furthermore, it provides an invaluable platform for us to provide quick time information and advice in times of major incidents and events and allows us to keep people informed as to what’s happening.
“It does not replace other means of communication – the importance of the local bobby attending local meetings will never be taken for granted. But the opportunities that social media present to us further enhances our ability to interact with the community and provides an immediacy that can only be of benefit to everyone using it.”
The app can be downloaded for iPhones at http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/tayside-police/id580227484 and for Android phones at Google Play, http://play.google.com/store/search?q=MultizoneLimited.