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Free scheme to make Harlow residents feel safer

Politics / Tue 16th Jun 2015 at 05:44pm

A FREE scheme that helps people feel safer when out and about in town is being promoted as part of Essex Keep Safe Week 2015.

The Keep Safe Scheme provides free key fobs for older people aged 60 and over to carry and contain essential telephone numbers of relatives, friends and carers. These can be used to contact someone in situations like losing a purse or wallet, feeling unwell or becoming disoriented.

Local venues identified as safe places provide free access to use of a telephone or will make a call on behalf of someone producing their Keep Safe card. The Scheme has strong support from local traders, businesses and organisations offering to act as one of the safe places.

Keep Safe key fobs can be currently used in 54 different places such as shops and libraries in Harlow and some other Essex towns. Keep Scheme members should look out for the Keep Safe logo (attached) which identifies that the venue is part of the scheme.

For Essex Keep Safe Week the Council and Keep Safe supporting organisations will be handing out key fobs outside ASDA in the Water Gardens tomorrow (Wednesday 17 June 2015) from 9.30am to 1pm.

Councillor Emma Toal, Deputy Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Youth & Community, said: “The Keep Safe scheme helps people especially older residents keep their independence so they can continue to go out and about without feeling vulnerable. In recent months the Council has been working with other organisations to raise awareness of the scheme, particularly as part of the aim to make Harlow a dementia-friendly community. Over 1,500 fobs have been handed out so far in Harlow and people are using the scheme. If you know a relative or friend who would benefit from the scheme please contact the Council for more information.”

Harlow resident, Evelyn Maitland (84), said: “Keep Safe makes me feel a little more confident when I go out. It’s nice to know that someone would help me if I needed it. On a recent trip to hospital I couldn’t remember my daughter’s mobile phone number, the nurse took the number from my Keep Safe key fob and rang my daughter directly, so it was very useful indeed! Several of my friends have the key fob on their front door keys and have all said how useful it is.”

The Keep Safe scheme is run by Harlow Council, Essex County Council, Essex Police and Essex Safeguarding Adults Boards.

If you would like to join the scheme contact Becci Court on 01279 446455 or email [email protected]

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