WIGANERS worried about trick or treating this Halloween can send out a clear message if visitors are welcome on their doorstep or not.
Police are distributing flyers to residents across the borough which can be placed in the window on October 31 to invite or dissuade youngsters looking for sweets.
The campaign is part of the annual Operation Treacle against anti-social behaviour, and is particularly aimed at vulnerable and elderly residents who fear the seasonal high spirits and feel intimidated or threatened.
Police are touring schools and promise lots of highly-visible patrols in the run-up to the Halloween festivities, saying they will not tolerate any anti-social behaviour and will crack down on potential troublemakers.
Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan of Greater Manchester Police said: “Unfortunately, not everyone respects the traditions of Halloween and often we see people’s fun being spoiled by the actions of a few who commit acts of anti-social behaviour and criminal damage.
“I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone of the need to behave responsibly and respect others at this time of year, and to understand the consequences of irresponsible behaviour for themselves and others.”
Officers have made it clear to youngsters that acts such as throwing flour or eggs at windows during trick or treating will not be tolerated, while alcohol being drunk on the streets will be confiscated and hoax calls to the emergency services will be targeted.
Offenders could face penalties including an £80 fine, arrest and even a criminal record, while a range of civil penalties ranging from ASBOs to possible evictions from social housing may also be enforced.