Cold Calling Danger Highlighted during National Consumer Week
Residents have been armed with cold caller deterrents at a
series of special events around the borough.
The first of a series of drop in sessions organised by St Helens
Council and its Community Safety Partners saw hundreds of stickers
handed out for householders to put ion their front doors.
The stickers warn cold callers, who may be offering roof repairs,
tree cutting or to clean or repair drives, to leave and not
But as well as having little or no regard for consumer law - and
possibly charging exorbitant prices for poor quality work - the
callers can sometimes have an even more sinister motive. Using
distraction tactics such as asking to use the toilet or the phone
to gain access to homes in order to steal valuables, while an
accomplice keeps the householder busy.
Partner agencies also appeared at the venues - Central Library,
Eccleston Library and the Hardshaw Centre - to warn people about
answering their door to cold callers. Members of the public were
also encouraged to use the Council's Trader Register - which lists
reputable traders across the borough. To see the full list go to www.sthelens.gov.uk/traderregister.
Merseyside Police and the Councils Safer Communities Team, have
also been speaking to residents in local neighbourhoods to promote
the use of SmartWater - property-marking liquid containing a unique
code that can be seen under ultraviolet light - and have produced a
video to warn about the dangers of cold callers.
St Helens Council's Cabinet Member for Environmental Protection and
Safer Communities Councillor Richard McCauley said "St Helens
Council Trading Standards Service have taken part in this national
consumer campaign, to highlight to St Helens residents that they
are entitled to say NO to cold callers. Residents should never feel
pressured on their own doorstep to buy goods or services that they
don't really want! Any fair and honest callers will be happy to
comply with the wishes of residents who are displaying these
stickers and not call at those doors.
"The Trader Register is a fantastic scheme available for all
residents, allowing them to feel confident that they are dealing
with traders who have been recommended by their customers. The
benefits for traders who sign up to the scheme are immense and I
would encourage all local traders to contact Trading Standards and
Caption: Cold call clampdown….Pictured at the event in St.
Helens Central Library are (left to right): Darrell Wilson,
Chief Trading Standards Officer; Emma Hartley-Davis, Principal
Trading Standards Officer; Peter Mallett, Crime & Justice
Co-ordinator; Michael Egan, CAB Worker and Karl Pearce, St Helens