SDLP candidate for the Moor area in Derry, Emmet Doyle is urging homeowners to be vigilant after a number of recent burglaries in the Creggan and Fountain areas of the city.
Mr Doyle said older residents, in particular, expressed “real concern” about the break-ins.
He said: “The tactics being used by thieves is becoming more brazen, with some entering homes and premises whilst residents are at home. A recent break-in in the Hawkin Street area was via a basement window, such is the determination of those involved in this activity.
“The victims are often senior citizens. Police statistics for the last two years reveal those aged 65 and over are targeted in more burglaries than any other age group, and are more than twice as likely to be victims as those aged between 30 and 35. This is absolutely unacceptable.
“I appreciate police say the issue is a priority for them, however, I believe a dedicated taskforce encompassing Community Safety wardens, police officers and residents’ groups to increase efforts to thwart criminals preying on vulnerable people, especially older residents would be welcomed in the community.
“I would urge residents across the city to be vigilant and take preventive measures to keep their homes and families safe. I would urge people to check regularly on elderly family members or neighbours.”