Domestic staff falling victim to criminals while at work in private homes is common. There have been many cases of gardeners robbed while working outside or domestic workers conned into opening the gate for “meter readers” and then being tied up and assaulted before the home is ransacked. In recent times they fall victim to criminals pretending to be from a courier company.
At the domestic watch meeting held on 11Th August at Bordeaux South Community Park, domestic staff were equipped with the knowledge and tools they need to protect themselves and those in their care.
Matthews provided the following valuable insights:
- Do not open the gate, without confirming there is a delivery with their employer. Even if you are expecting a delivery check it is a legitimate delivery company
- Make sure the children are inside when you accept a delivery for their own safety
- Keep security gates locked and the keys removed
- Rather sign for goods through the gate and be absolutely sure there is no around before opening your gate to retrieve the goods
- Everyone must know who to contact in an emergency and what procedures to follow when activating a panic to your private security company.
- Be vigilant at all times, inside and outside the home – listen for the dogs barking, for example, and check it out
- Report any suspicious activity or persons in your neighbourhood to your private security company or the police to investigate
- Domestic staff/others must carry remote panic buttons on them at all times and know where the mounted panic buttons are in the house
- Lastly remember the social distancing rules and always wear a mask
Panic buttons are key, he adds, saying that domestic workers and residents should have easy access to a button if a crisis arises. “It’s no use if panic buttons are put in a cupboard somewhere and forgotten about. They need to be easily accessible and we recommend that you have them in a pocket or hanging around your neck for quick access. Panic buttons should also be checked regularly to ensure they are in good working condition,” concludes Matthews.
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