NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH: Why is it so difficult to get this implemented?


#1

Our Homeowners Association has been promising… on and off… for 12 years, to implement a “Neighborhood Watch” program in our sub-division; but it has YET to happen. I’m wondering why that is? :shrug: (Yes, we’ve asked. All they will commit to is… “it’s coming”… or similar).

Any thoughts or experiences with “Neighborhood Watch” in your own neighborhoods? Pros and cons?

Thanks and God bless.


#2

I don’t know what the right formula is for effective Neighborhood Watches but just like some Church or Parish small groups, some seem to work extremely well in one area and a few blocks away, not much at all. I would love to see a neighborhood watch group around my area but have not put the time into researching the process of starting one and then allocating the time to keep it running (would mean that I could have a 1 person neighborhood watch for a while!). Really though, most police departments have a special branch for those sorts of programs and if not, maybe consider forming just a small “Core Group” of three to four people that will dedicate say 1 night a week for 3 months to meet with an open door policy to new people that may wish to join. It would probably do a lot to not only keep the area safer, but, also bring closer bonds and relationships with your neighbors. But then again, I’m yet to get one off the ground so if you find the secret to a solid group, Please keep us all posted. God Bless and I will say a prayer that you find success in your endeavor![SIGN][/SIGN]:thumbsup:


#3

In my area, there are several neighborhood watch programs that have had varying degrees of success.

For a neighborhood watch to succeed, you need several (5+) citizens who are willing to attend all the meetings and plan the group’s activities. Support from the municipal government might help, but it is not necessary, nor is it enough for your group to succeed.

Here are some activities that the group has done which have made a positive impact:

  1. Hold regular meetings where a representative of the local police department is present. Use this opportunity to inform the police officer of drug-dealing hotspots so they can be patrolled with greater frequency. Also use this opportunity to have the police inform citizens of the proper procedure for calling the police, and the situations where calling the police is and isn’t appropriate. This will make residents more comfortable with calling the police and keeping closer tabs on drug dealers.

  2. If there is a drug-dealing hotspot, you can have citizens sit outside on lawn chairs in the evening and write down the license plates of everyone who stops there. This is very effective because the attention is enough to get the drug dealers to move elsewhere. We never had a problem with harassment or retaliation from this, but it is always a possibility.

  3. When there is a major crime (such as a murder) in the neighborhood, call a special meeting to encourage police to investigate the crime. Use this as a “talking point” to advocate for more patrolling of drug dealing hotspots (the usual cause of murders).

  4. If there is a series of break-ins in an area, notify the citizens in the area so they can keep an eye out for the burglar. (This may or may not result in the burglar being caught.)

  5. A “national night out” event is a good way to get started, but by itself it isn’t going to do anything about crime.

  6. Holding regular neighborhood dog-walks can make residents feel more confident about walking around the neighborhood, which will decrease drug dealing.

If you do not have a municipal police department and must rely on the county police, safety will probably suffer because policemen who patrol a wide area can’t keep tabs on the local troublemakers and drug dealing patterns. In this case, it’s probably time to convince your local government to hire off-duty police officers to provide community policing.

Also, make sure that non-English speakers feel comfortable at your meetings.


#4

Those are some extremely informative and helpful tips. Thanks Ack for posting them. I am printing your post out and will be following some of those suggestions for my Neighborhood. You are absolutely right too, its the drugs and drug dealers that are the problem and fear of them holds many of us back from taking any action.

I pray that we may all be emboldened through Faith and be guided towards right people in all our neighborhoods, that together, we may be stronger in our communities than those that are tearing them apart. Lord give us strength and courage to protect ourselves and those around us, I pray that the dealers may receive intercession from your Saints and Angels, that they may become a force for good instead of evil and that all who struggle with safety in and around their homes be provided with strength and courage to serve your cause.


#5

I think your problem is waiting for the HOA to do something when it really comes down to you and your neighbors. Everyone is waiting for someone else to do something. If this is what you really want:
Gather 5 people for a private meeting
Plan a course of action
The above posts was excellent for what you need to do. One of those is working with the police department. They have people who will come to your meetings and give you updates on your problem areas. Also provide tips on what you can do to prevent crimes and report crimes.
Then find a place where you can meet and advertise by flyers where the public meeting will be.
Once that is done, you are on your way.

The group I was involved with had a monthly newsletter that we printed out. Then the block captains would pass them out to their people.


#6

It is diffucult because no one is willing to step up and do the work.

Volunteer to implement it and to lead it for the first term. That will get the ball rolling


#7

Thanks all for your responses. I appreciate it.

The problem is not that I haven’t been willing to step up to the plate. The problem is that I was ignorant of how the Neighborhood Watch Program works. That’s why I posted the question.

Our HOA has been promising, on and off… for 12 years that this would happen. And, then… you hear nothing. They haven’t gone door to door… seeking interested neighbors. Nothing. Why do they keep promising, and then not following through? :shrug: Hmm. Whatever.

Well now, I know how it works. Perhaps I can get some of my neighbors interested. Thanks again!

God bless. :slight_smile:


#8

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