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NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM History Neighborhood Watch is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most well known crime prevention concepts in history. While.

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Presentation on theme: "NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM History Neighborhood Watch is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most well known crime prevention concepts in history. While."— Presentation transcript:

1 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM History Neighborhood Watch is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most well known crime prevention concepts in history. While the modern day concept of Neighborhood Watch came into prominence in the late 1960’s in response to an increasing burglary rate, its roots in America can actually be traced all the way back to the days of Colonial settlements when night watchmen patrolled the streets. The National Sheriff’s Association (NSA) took this crime prevention concept a step further by making it a national initiative…..the National Neighborhood Watch Program. The program was developed in response to a multitude of requests from Sheriff’s and Police Chiefs around the Country. Law enforcement leaders were looking for a crime prevention program that would incorporate citizen involvement, and that would address the increasing number of burglaries taking place, especially in rural and suburban residential areas. Funding was sought and obtained from the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA) in 1972, and thus, the National Neighborhood Watch Program was born. Since that time the concept has taken on different names and forms, i.e., Neighborhood Watch, Crime Watch, Block Watch, Citizen’s on Patrol, etc. No matter what it is called, it is a community based program that’s been proven to deter crime. The first two years of the program were devoted to disseminating information on the nature and volume of burglary, and providing information on how to secure residential property and make it less vulnerable to break-ins. From there, it evolved to promoting the establishment of ongoing local neighborhood watch groups where citizens could work in conjunction with their law enforcement agencies in an effort to reduce burglaries and other neighborhood crimes. Throughout the years, Neighborhood Watch has grown from and “extra eyes and ears” approach to crime prevention to a much more proactive, community-oriented endeavor. Neighborhood Watch groups are now incorporating activities that not only address crime prevention issues, but also restore pride and unity to a neighborhood. It is not uncommon to see Neighborhood Watch groups participating in neighborhood cleanups and other activities that impact the quality of life for community residents. The adoption of community policing by local law enforcement agencies has also contributed to the resurgence in watch groups over the years. Neighborhood Watch fits nicely within the framework of law enforcement/community partnerships, and Neighborhood Watch meetings can be a useful forum to discuss neighborhood problems and practice problem-solving techniques.

2 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM What Is a Neighborhood Watch? A Neighborhood Watch is an organized effort by concerned residents to prevent crime and improve the quality of life in their neighborhood. In cooperation with the police department, residents work to safeguard each other’s homes and reduce the risk of crime in their community.

3 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM How Is a Neighborhood Watch Organized? Our Neighborhood Watch consists of a Block Captains, Lieutenants, and residents The Block Captains serves as the liaison between our residents and the police department. The Block Captains are also is responsible for sharing information with the Lieutenants. Lieutenants communicate with the residents who live on their blocks. Residents are the “eyes and ears” of Neighborhood Watch. The success of Neighborhood Watch depends on residents who are alert and who communicate with each other. Block Captain Lieutenant YOU (Resident)

4 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM What Is YOUR Responsibility? As resident of a Neighborhood Watch, it will be your responsibility to call the police about all suspicious activity in our neighborhood. You and your fellow residents should report any unusual situations, such as: A stranger entering a neighbor's home that appears to be unoccupied. Anyone looking into parked cars. Breaking glass, gunshots, screams, or abnormally barking dogs. Anyone loitering around the neighborhood or parks. Anyone going door to door who tries to open a door, or goes into a backyard. Anyone carrying unwrapped property at any unusual time, or running while carrying property. Any vehicle cruising slowly back and forth on your street. Any abandoned vehicle on your street. Windows or doors recently broken at a home or business. ANY thing that is suspicious.

5 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM What Is YOUR Responsibility? The fundamental purpose of Neighborhood Watch is to prevent crime by increasing residents’ awareness. Residents are expected to pay attention to what goes on in their neighborhood, to recognize suspicious activity, and to report it to the police. Additionally, recidents may work with Block Captains and the Lieutenants to solve neighborhood problems or participate in organized events.

6 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM What Does a Block Captain Have to Do? The Block Captain is responsible for creating and maintaining a Neighborhood Watch phone tree (a list of the names and telephone numbers and e-mail addresses of all residents in his/her area). Block Captains should have a least one Neighborhood Watch meeting every year, although it is encouraged to have gatherings on a more regular basis (Park events, Easter egg hunt, BBQ, etc.). The primary duty of the Block Captain is to serve as a liaison between our residents and the police department.

7 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM What Does a Lieutenant Have to Do? In conjunction with the Block Captain, Lieutenants make up the “core team” that makes the Neighborhood Watch function. Lieutenants support the Block Captain by communicating with residents in their immediate area. The number of Lieutenants that a Section has is determined by the size of the Section. Lieutenants’ primary duties are to share information with residents and to assist the Block Captain with events and meetings.

8 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM What Can We Expect from the Neighborhood Watch Program The Program Director’s (a Harford County Police Officer) role is to provide us with the information and tools that our neighborhood needs to successfully implement and maintain a strong Neighborhood Watch Program. We can expect the Program Director to help us in the early stages of our Watch development by educating us about Neighborhood Watch, providing pamphlets and other materials that we can share with residents, and attending our initial meeting. The Program Director is responsible for training Neighborhood Watch members to recognize and report suspicious activity and to actively prevent crime through proper home security measures. Additionally, the Program Director can assist with resolving crime or quality of life problems in our neighborhood. Well organized neighborhoods make for a better community.

9 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM How will an Internet Site help us? The ability to communicate within our community and the local law enforcement is a key component of securing a safe and enjoyable neighborhood. The use of the Internet provides a medium for doing so in a timely and efficient manner. Information is always available to everyone when they need it and the distribution of information is immediate. We do not all have access to computers, and call-in numbers have been established for all of Long Bar Harbor.

10 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM Who maintains the site? One of our residents, Steve Olsen, has volunteered to be the Webmaster of http://www.longbarharbor.com and manage the web-site. There will be a mean to communicate to Steve if anything of interest to the community needs to be published. For the daily ‘neighbor’ communication there is the Long Bar Harbor Yahoo Group. There is a link to this Group via the Long Bar Harbor web-site.

11 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM Are there any fees? The Neighborhood Watch and Crime Stopper Wanted/Alert is a FREE service within our community.. There are NO fees

12 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM How do I get started? Long Bar Harbor is divided into four sections (Blocks): We have confirmed Block Captains for Sections 2 and 4 and are still looking to confirm volunteers for Block Captains for Section 1 and 3. Section 4 has three confirmed Lieutenants and Section 2 has two confirmed Lieutenants. We need to confirm one Lieutenant for Section 4, two Lieutenants for Section 2, four Lieutenants for Section 1 and four Lieutenants for Section 3. Even though you do not have the time, health or interest in volunteering for any of the above responsibilities, the neighborhood will still need your eyes and ears.

13 NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH PROGRAM WHAT IS A NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH NOT ? A neighborhood watch does not mean prying or nosy neighbors A neighborhood watch does not mean patrolling the neighborhood A neighborhood watch does not mean frequent meetings A neighborhood watch does not mean that anyone take any personal risks to prevent or deter crime A neighborhood watch does not mean a vigilante force working outside the normal procedures of the local police department A neighborhood watch does not mean a 100% guarantee that crime will not occur in your neighborhood

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