The Sussex Police Pegasus cardPosted on 11th December 2015 by Matt Day
The Pegasus card, pictured above, is available for anyone who has a disability or illness that may make it hard to communicate with the police in an emergency or difficult situation.
Everyone who registers with Pegasus has their details saved in a secure database and is assigned a PIN they can use when calling the police — this makes the call quicker and easier as they don’t have to give their name and details.
Calls aren’t the only thing made easier by the Pegasus card, as showing the card itself to a member of police or other emergency services staff in person lets them know that additional help and support may be needed.
You can find out more about the card and how to apply on the Sussex Police website.
This is important for our clients because they have invisible disabilities, so it may not always be obvious that they need additional assistance. They may also not be very good at letting people know exactly what assistance they do need, even when asked, particularly when they are under stress — which they likely are if they have a reason to talk to the police. Interact can help people sign up for the card and make sure the police have all the details they need about how to communicate with them and support them in an emergency, so please get in touch if you’d like to know more or need help to get one.
The self-evident app (here’s a PDF explaining what that is) isn’t specifically designed for people with disabilities, but the things it can do are really important for our clients as well. The app allows people to report a crime to the police from a smartphone or tablet, giving them the opportunity to put the experience in their own words and add any other information like photos, video/audio recordings, or map locations, to help the police investigate.
One of the really exciting things about using this app is it allows people to report crime that they might not think is worth troubling the police with. We have spoken to many people who have experienced disability hate crime — things like verbal bullying or shoving — and don’t think it’s worth telling the police because they don’t know who did it, or they simply left as quickly as they could and later wished they had done something about it. With the app people can tell the police about these incidents, allowing them to spot trends like locations where this is often happening and plan increased police presence in the area. It’s a fantastic way to help the police gather the information they need and build a picture of the problem so they can work with the Safe in the City team to make sure it is tackled.
Interact will be helping people learn how to use the app to report crime as part of its advocacy for victims and witnesses, so if you have autism or a learning disability and want assistance using the app or contacting the police over the phone or in person about a crime we want to hear from you so we can help you to do that.
Interact phone: 01273 229008
Interact email: firstname.lastname@example.org