Neighborhood Watch The Neighborhood Watch: One of the most effective crime prevention tools being utilized today is the Neighborhood Watch. The Neighborhood Watch was designed to help strengthen the relationships between neighbors and in the process build community wide crime prevention. Law enforcement officials have for years relied on the community to assist in apprehending criminals after the crime has been committed. With a Neighborhood Watch, this assistance is proactive instead of reactive, meaning that the watch can stop the crime before it occurs.

A Neighborhood Watch can be formed around any geographical unit: a block, apartment, public housing complex or neighborhood.A watch group serves as an extra set of eyes and ears for reporting crime and helping neighbors. The effectiveness of a Neighborhood Watch is depends on its members. The Neighborhood Watch serves as a springboard for efforts that address community concerns such as recreation for youth, child care, and affordable housing. A Neighborhood Watch can easily be set up, first contact your neighbors, then then contact your local law enforcement agency and check about setting up a Neighborhood Watch meeting.

In order for a group to be certified as a neighborhood watch, most agencies require a minimum of two initial meetings.After the two initial meetings, it is up to each neighborhood to elect a captain for the Neighborhood Watch. Once this is done, the captain will receive signs that will announce to would be criminals that the neighborhood is on the watch. (National Crime Prevention) There are some tips that are important to keep in mind, which help the Neighborhood watch succeed.

First, organize regular meetings that focus on current issues such as drug abuse, crime in schools, recreational activities for young people, and neighborhood problems. Second organize community patrols to walk around streets or apartment complexes and report suspicious activity to police.People in cars with cellular phones or CB radios can also patrol. Also, adopt a park or street in the neighborhood. Pick up litter, repair broken equipment, paint over graffiti, to make the neighborhood look nicer.

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