West Yorkshire Police is again asking for the public’s help following an increase in calls for service. Last year, the Force launched a campaign asking the public to ‘help us to help you’ by using our online contact options where possible instead of calling 101. Advice was also given on calls that should be for another organisation, inappropriate 999 calls and what to do if you call 999 in error.
In 2023 so far, West Yorkshire Police has been receiving an average of around 1,300 999 calls and 2,000 101 calls every day, and these numbers are increasing.
Tanya Shackleton, Senior Contact Manager at West Yorkshire Police, said:
“We would firstly like to say a big thank you to members of the public who have continued to use or tried using our online contact options for the first time.
“During the campaign last year, we saw use of our online contact methods more than double. We also received nearly 80,000 less calls to 101 than the previous year.
“Unfortunately, we are starting to see an increase in calls on both our emergency and non-emergency lines. We are refreshing last year’s campaign to help raise awareness of what you as the public can do to ‘help us to help you’.
“I want to make it clear that this is not about deterring people from contacting the police and if there is a threat to life or a crime in progress than we absolutely want people to be phoning us on 999. To have the capacity to deal with the legitimate emergency demand though, we need to ensure that we are reducing inappropriate and unnecessary demand and making the most of our online contact alternatives.”
Online contact options include:
101 Live Chat
Members of the public can have a two-way conversation with a member of the Customer Contact Centre team by using the 101 Live Chat system on the West Yorkshire Police website. The benefit of using this system is that a Contact Centre Agent can provide assistance to a number of people at the same time, rather than being engaged on one phone line, and for quick queries, it is an ideal way to beat the queue. It is also popular with the deaf community or those members of the public who need a little time to compose their thoughts.
Online crime and incident reporting
While 101 can be used to report crimes, there are also options to report crimes on the West Yorkshire Police website. There are a number of dedicated reporting forms including anti-social behaviour, nuisance bikes, criminal damage and domestic abuse.
Ask the Police
West Yorkshire Police has signed up to askthepolice.uk which offers answers to frequently asked questions to the police. Residents are urged wherever possible to check on the website or mobile app first to see if they can get an answer to their question without needing to contact the police.
Local Crime Tracker
The Local Crime Tracker allows people to find out the status of their investigation and investigating officer details by searching by their unique crime reference number.