Government district offices will strengthen liaison with residents to monitor public sentiment in times of economic difficulty. Secretary for Home Affairs David Lan Hong-tsung said officers would step up liaisons with area committees to increase contact. He said a greater sense of community had become more important in the present difficult economic climate. Mr Lan said officers had taken note of social problems and tragedies such as suicides sparked by the economic crisis. Voluntary groups such as the Samaritans had offered help for those who needed counselling. Mr Lan said district offices and organisations such as neighbourhood groups could do more to help. He said the Home Affairs Bureau had also conducted regular polls on people's feelings and aspirations. The latest poll, conducted last month, is due soon. A senior home affairs official said the level of dissatisfaction with the overall performance of the Government had increased since a poll last year. In that survey, conducted in November and released in December, the satisfaction rating dropped from 53 per cent to 45 per cent, its lowest level for last year.