Cold shoulder for sales calls
A CONSULTATION on a proposal to ban cold calling in Clackmannanshire has been launched.
The public consultation exercise is being conducted by the Clackmannanshire Alliance Doorstep Crime Partnership in a bid to reduce doorstep crime.
Doorstep crime arises from doorstep callers, bogus workmen, high pressure salespeople, bogus officials and distraction burglary.
Distraction burglary is where the householder is distracted by a caller whilst another robs them.
It is well established that distraction burglaries and rogue doorstep trading are interlinked - all too often, the seemingly innocent doorstep seller is actually checking things out for a re-visit to carry out a burglary or distraction burglary.
Whilst this type of criminal behaviour can impact on anybody in any place, research shows that older people and those living alone are particularly at risk.
Cold calling is when uninvited salespeople approach you at home.
The term cold calling can also apply to telephone calls and emails.
The consultation involves the possible introduction of a Clackmannanshire No Cold Calling Zone or Clackmannanshire Controlled Cold Calling Zone.
A national Trading Standards Institute survey (2002) showed that 96% of people simply did not want doorstep cold-callers and virtually nobody actually welcomed them.
In response to this, communities and local authority trading standards services across the country have set up No Cold Calling Zones and Cold Calling Control Zones.
Depute Council Leader Craig Holden said, "Hundreds of no cold calling zones are operating successfully elsewhere in the UK with reports of significant crime reduction and a greater feeling of security amongst residents.
"I encourage everyone to fill in our quick survey and let us know your views on this important issue."
Not all cold callers are criminals - many people regularly order cosmetics or household goods from catalogues pushed through their doors or are happy to speak to charity or religious canvassers who cold call.
The difference between No Cold Calling Zones and Cold Calling Control Zones is that the latter can continue to allow the presence of regular callers, utility and delivery services, charity canvassers, religious canvassers and other known callers.
Cold Calling Control Zones only prohibit unwanted callers whilst No Cold Calling Zones prohibit all cold callers.
The consultation can be found on ClacksWeb at www.clacksweb.org.uk/council/consultationlist/?consultation=212
More information is available from Clackmannanshire and Stirling Council Trading Standards on 0845 277 7000.
This article appeared in Alloa & Hillfoots Advertiser 10 Oct 12
Have your say. Post a comment on this article.
Oct 8, 17:47
Don't open the door or answer the phone if you don't know who it is. You have no obligation to open your door to anyone except, possibly, the police.
Before you open the door ask who it is and, if you don't want to speak to them, either say 'no thank you' or simply ignore them. If you answer the phone and it is someone you don't want to talk to simply say 'no thank you' and hang up. Too many people, especially the older members of society, feel they must answer the phone or open their door. They feel it is rude not to. That is why these people target older people.
For many years campaigns have urged people to do as I have suggested but still people will fall foul of the con artists.
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