Cornwall Trading Standards are warning homeowners of the dangers of agreeing to work on their doorstep

April 28th, 2017 by

April has seen a 44% rise in reported incidents of doorstep crime compared to the same time last year. The main crimes reported are in relation to rogue block paving firms. The companies cold call to get business but appear above board, using new sign written vehicles and providing glossy fliers and websites.

NCC sticker

The work done is overpriced and whilst it looks like a good job when completed, we know that within a year the blocks will have sunk as not enough hard-core or sand was placed underneath. Add into that the use of cheap membranes to prevent weed growth and you’ll soon have an uneven and weed ridden driveway.

Our message could not be clearer. DO NOT agree to work on your doorstep, no matter how genuine or charming the traders may appear. Trustworthy companies get work from word of mouth and recommendations in the main and every one we speak to tells us they simply do not have the time to cold call. If you want to improve your home please get at least three quotes and use a trading standards approved trader from our Buy With Confidence Scheme which can be found at www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk/

If you or someone you know has been a victim of this type of crime, you can report it to Trading Standards on 03454 040506

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Cornwall Fire, Rescue and Community Safety Service to welcome applications for wholetime firefighters

April 24th, 2017 by

Cornwall Fire, Rescue and Community Safety Service will be welcoming applications for wholetime firefighters and operational apprenticship places from Monday 24 April 2017.

We will be accepting applications from:

  • People who do not have competent knowledge or skills about the fire and rescue service and are a resident in or have a strong association to Cornwall or Isles of Scilly or live in PL1,2,3,4 or 5 postcodes.
  • People who are competent on-call firefighters within Cornwall and would like to transfer to a wholetime firefighter role.
  • People who are competent on-call or wholetime firefighters in any UK fire and rescue service and would like to transfer to Cornwall as a wholetime firefighter.
  • People who want an apprenticeship, who do not have competent knowledge or skills about the fire and rescue service and are a resident in or have a strong association to Cornwall or Isles of Scilly or live in PL1,2,3,4 or 5 postcodes.

People can only apply using one route and it must be the one which applies to your level of competence.

The service is also looking to improve under-represented people within the workforce and are promoting applications from women and people who identify as LGBTQI+. This is a very exciting time to be joining the service, our recruits will experience our brand new modular approach to learning the broader diverse skills of a community firefighter within Cornwall.

Group Manager Kathryn Billing said: “This is a rare chance to join, in my opinion, the best career in the world. If you want to help the most vulnerable people in our community, want a challenge and to work in a professional, passionate team environment, then please apply; this is a fantastic opportunity to join our great service.”

RecruitmentCornwall’s Assistant Chief Fire Officer Phil Martin said: “The role of our modern Firefighters involves working to ensure that Cornwall is a safe place to live work and visit. Primarily this will involve visiting people in their homes and working with communities and businesses to ensure the risk of fires and other emergencies are reduced through better education and awareness. Our Firefighters do of course need to train for and respond to a range of emergencies and the public rightly expect and receive a professional response when they are in need. We are looking for people who have a passion for making a positive difference, who are prepared to be flexible to an ever changing working environment and who want to develop a wide range of skills to help those in need.”

Applications will be available to complete from the afternoon of Monday 24 April 2017.

More details on the recruitment process can be found from our website here: http://bit.ly/2lgu628

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How many smoke alarms do you have?

April 6th, 2017 by

snokealarmssavelives

Latest fire statistics reveal that one smoke alarm may not be enough to provide you with the best chance of escaping a fire in the home.

It’s clear that most people know a working smoke alarm can save lives by providing those vital few seconds needed to escape a house fire. But, despite the majority of homes (88%) having at least one working smoke alarm in their home, smoke alarms alerted householders to a fire in England in only a third of cases. The most common reason a smoke alarm failed to activate was because the fire was outside its range.

For this reason, the Fire Kills campaign and Cornwall Fire, Rescue and Community Safety (CFRCS) Service are encouraging people in Cornwall to have a think about the number of smoke alarms in their home.

We must all make sure that we have enough smoke alarms to cover our whole home,” said Watch Manager (WM) Katie Hoskins-Sweeney from CFRCS Service, “If you don’t have enough, or they’re not in the right place, you might not be alerted in time.

 The vast majority of us now have at least one smoke alarm in our homes, but early detection and warning is vital to reduce the devastation a fire in the home can cause. That’s why it’s so important that you have enough smoke alarms and that they are in the right place to have the best chance of alerting you and your loved ones to a fire.

WM Katie Hoskins-Sweeney continued; “You should make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home, preferably in hallways and landings. Placing smoke detectors near to sleeping areas and in rooms where there are electrical appliances could give you the extra warning you need. It’s also important to make sure you can hear your alarms from any room in the house, especially the bedroom. You can check this by asking someone to test your alarms while you are in various rooms with the door shut. If you cannot hear the alarms you should consider an additional detector or looking into an interlinked system.”

 “It’s also important to remember that smoke alarms don’t last forever. The power might work, but the detection mechanism deteriorates with time. So whether they are battery operated or wired to the mains, to work at their best they should be replaced every ten years.

CFRCS Service offers these five smoke alarm top tips:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home.
  • The ideal position is on the ceiling, in the middle of a room or on a hallway or landing.
  • Consider fitting additional alarms in other rooms where there are electrical appliances and near sleeping areas.
  • Don’t put alarms in or near kitchens and bathrooms where smoke or steam can set them off by accident.
  • Replace your smoke alarms every ten years.

CFRCS Service is also urging carers and people who keep a close eye on less able relatives to check that these homes have enough smoke alarms in the right places too.

And finally,” added WM Katie Hoskins -Sweeney “don’t forget to test your smoke alarms on the first of every month!

Cornwall Council cabinet member for communities Geoff Brown said: “Smoke alarms are a very cheap way to protect residents and this is important advice. In the event of a fire it is infinitely preferable for fire crews to arrive on scene to discover the occupants, alerted by the alarm, safely outside rather than still inside a burning building.

For more information, visit Fire Kills on Facebook or call us on 0800 3581 999 for free fire safety advice or to book a home fire safety visit.

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Twelves Company has been awarded ‘Best Domestic Abuse Victim Support Organisation- UK

April 6th, 2017 by

The 2017 Social Care Awards have been designed to give recognition to the individuals, teams and companies responsible for showing the highest level of care, compassion and courage in one of the most important, yet challenging, industries.  GHP is rewarding outstanding service and innovation within the field of social care in order to celebrate the industry’s finest and bravest. These awards recognise those who selflessly and generously donate their time and effort to look after others, without ever asking for recognition or commendation. Further information available at http://www.ghp-magazine.com/2017-social-care-awards

Awards

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Evaluation of the police response to domestic abuse incidents from the victims perspective

April 6th, 2017 by

Seeds1

SEEDS stands for Survivors Empowering and Educating Domestic Abuse Services and is a means by which survivors have their voices heard by those planning and providing domestic abuse services. The Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence team works with SEEDS to carry out research and evaluations to enable those who have experienced domestic abuse to have their say.

In 2014, SEEDS conducted an evaluation examining the police response to domestic abuse incidents from the victim’s perspective. This resulted in recommendations being presented to the Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Strategic Group with a particular focus on police. The Strategic Group asked SEEDS to conduct a similar evaluation in 2 years to see if any changes had been made with regards to the recommendations suggested.

The evaluation covered the following areas:

  • Initial response
  • Risk
  • Support
  • Follow-up

The findings, including a comparison from 2014, were written up in a report and presented back to the group.

The 2014 evaluation suggested improvements could be made in the way police respond to victims to ensure they felt listened too and understood. The 2016 evaluation examined whether improvements in this area had been made and surveyed other areas, such as risk, support and follow-up. The overall aims of the evaluation were to:

  • find out the views of survivors who had experienced a police response;
  • represent their views and experiences through the report;
  • share these with staff working in the different domestic abuse services in order to increase their understanding of the survivors perspective;
  • improve services by learning from survivors experiences.

The survey was carried out over a 6 month period, from January 2016-June 2016. Results were then input and analysed and the findings were presented during Domestic Abuse Awareness week (November 2016) and to the DASV Strategic Group in February 2017.

 The conclusions from the evaluation were:

  • Overall feedback was positive.
  • Risk assessments seem to be a strong area for the police. A high proportion completed risk assessments on first contact and respondents were happy with the risk level that came from the assessment.
  • There has been an improvement in the way police respond to victims as a much higher proportion felt listened too in 2016 compared with 2014.
  • If the survey were to be run again it would be useful to use more of the same questions to get a greater comparison of areas and to include some interviews to get more details from respondents.
  • Because date of incident had not been completed in the majority of cases it was unclear as to when the incident had taken place and therefore how recent the incident was.
  • Although two thirds of respondents were positive about the support provided by the police, this could be increased, particularly in terms of respondents feeling like they were given someone to liaise with.
  • When the number of times that the victim contacts the police increases the response appears more likely to be negative.

Recommendations for the police are being written around these conclusions. The Police have also asked if the data collected could be used as a baseline for their future work they are planning around the victim’s perspective.

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Trading Standards working with local businesses to help residents avoid the rogues

April 2nd, 2017 by

Buy with Confidence Scheme

Cornwall Council, Trading Standards have been working hard to promote the Buy with Confidence scheme in Cornwall. Over the last year we have been able to more than double memberships. Cornwall Council, Trading Standards started up this scheme in 2014 and currently have nearly fifty members. The scheme is supported by 50+ Local Authority Trading Standards Services nationwide.

Applications are coming in every week, many businesses that apply say they have been looking for something that can prove their reliability and promote their commitment to trading fairly.

The Buy with Confidence, Trading Standards Approved logo gives businesses the opportunity to show they are a reputable, trustworthy business which in turn gives the customer added confidence that they will receive a good service.

Buy with confidence scheme

Other benefits for businesses that join the scheme include:

  • A profile on the Buy with Confidence national website, enabling the consumer to search and leave feedback for your business.
  • A listing on the Cornwall Council website under approved Buy with Confidence members.
  • Entitlement to advice, guidance and mediation through Trading Standards.
  • Added customer confidence.

To become a member:

Before admission, businesses get a full Trading Standards checkup to ensure they follow the law. If minor problems are found, advice is given to help the applicant do the right thing.

Previous business history is checked for CCJs and customer complaints. Background checks are also run for solvency and more. Criminal records certificates are checked for anyone who works in or around someone’s home.

Customer feedback/references are monitored before and after approval to ensure ongoing good service. The rigorous standards mean anyone using the buy with Confidence logo has proven they are amongst the best.

For a list of current Buy with Confidence members visit www.cornwallcouncil.gov.uk

Recent new applications include:

Brooklands Garage, Newport Ind Estate, Truro

John Roberts Bodywork, Indian Queens

Rodda & Hocking Ltd, Camborne

Dales Cornwall Ltd, Summercourt

Premier Mastic Asphalt Ltd, High Street Ind Est, St Austell

Timberland Joinery, Launceston

South West Carpets, Newquay

Peninsula Roofing, St Columb

J R Flat Roofing (UK) Ltd, Redruth

Collington & Company Ltd, Water-Ma-Trout

Wheeler Roofing Services Ltd, Tresillian

Veedubmachine Ltd, Redruth

Testimonials:

Andrew Toms Car Sales

We are pleased to be accepted as an approved car dealership with Trading Standards and be included in the Buy with Confidence scheme. It is a very welcome added assurance to our customers that they are dealing with a reputable garage.”

Powells Garage

Our team at Powells Garage were delighted to be invited to join the Buy with Confidence scheme, the direct endorsement by Trading Standards has given new customers genuine confidence about using our services and sales.

Directconservatories4U Ltd

We have been members of The Buy with Confidence scheme for over a year. Since joining our enquiries and sales have increased significantly. I am convinced that this can be attributed to the scheme, as customers can see we are a trustworthy business which has been vetted by our local Trading Standards office. I am sure we will support this for many years to come and would encourage other businesses in all sectors to join.

For more information contact us on 01208 893133

Email: bwc@cornwall.gov.ukbuywithconfidence.gov.uk

www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk

The Buy with Confidence approval scheme is just one of a number of business support and advice services offered by Business Regulatory Support. For more details of the range of accreditation schemes, legal and technical support and assistance with Trading Standards, Environmental Health, Licensing and Environmental Protection please contact us on 0300 1234 212 or visit us at www.businessregulatorysupport.co.uk/

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