A survey in Solomon Islands shows petty crime remains a significant problem but the number of serious offences is down.

The annual People's Survey helps to monitor progress made by the Regional Assistance Mission.

In questionnaires and through focus groups nearly five thousand people gave their views on a range of issues, including their sense of security.

There's a perception serious criminality has decreased but drunkenness, petty theft and social disturbances have got worse.

An official with the Australian National University team which conducted the survey, Michael Wairamo, says police appear to need more community help to deal with these issues.

"I think what is needed here is a co-operative approach where the communities and the police working together to address the increasing rate of petty crimes, especially to do with young people, consumption of kwaso - homebrew and their disruptive behaviour."

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