I received a complaint/request from a resident this week:

 “.. a young man knocked on the door, said he was a ‘young offender getting his life back’ and his job was selling kitchen stuff – dusters etc. I said no thanks and he got quite shirty with me. He just had a crumpled ID in his hand that he never showed me. It’s of concern because we have, as you know, a lot of elderly people in our ward who might not be as quick off the mark.”

I asked for advice and clarification from both the Police and Trading Standards.

Set out below is an extract from the Police advice:

“Good Afternoon Councillor,

In summary, the people that go door to door are generally employed by a company to sell items and they will often state they are ex-offenders or they have disabilities. The items they sell are generally overpriced and they are not sent out by the probation service. The only “scam” part is that they claim to be in this position when many are in fact not.

To sell door to door they do require a pedlars certificate, I believe, and most do not. Equally, they should not be in the “no cold call zones” of our ward”.

The ID they possess is given to them by the company and may or may not be genuine.

As always I would advise residents not to purchase any goods, say no thank you and close the door. Do not be pressured in to making a purchase and if this is a no cold calling zone then the matter can be reported to West Yorkshire joint services, which was trading standards.

We do get these teams coming to our area several times a year and they can be intimidation and cause for concern to people. We have had no reported crime in our ward that would be linked to this person being in the area.”