Reducing Community Crime
Crime is one of the great concerns in Britain. In poll after poll it appears as one of the major issues troubling voters. It’s an issue that concerns each and every community. There are no simple answers obviously, but there are steps community organizations can take to help cut crime.
The police are there to help, of course – it’s a main part of their job – but initiatives are always going to be more effective if they come from the grass roots, from the people who live in an area, and who have a stake in the place and the quality of life there.
Neighbourhood WatchSetting up a Neighbourhood Watch is the perfect solution to reducing crime. The volunteer members keep their eyes open for suspicious activity and report it directly to the police, who can then take action. They can also help educate residents in ways to reduce crime, especially stopping burglaries.The problem, of course, is that it requires a commitment of time, especially from the Watch Co-ordinator, and that might not be for everyone.
Community InitiativesIf there’s no group of people willing to form a Neighbourhood Watch, then an initiative from the community can be a godsend in terms of reducing neighbourhood crime. Obviously it’s not the same, and won’t be ongoing, but as a short-term measure it can greatly help.However, a community group can arrange meetings to educate people about ways to make their houses and property more secure – you’ll find the local Crime Prevention officers will be glad to come out and do this. Community groups can also identify the vulnerable in the community and arrange home visits for the same purpose.
GraffitiOne of the most unsightly problems is graffiti, and although removing it is a job for the council (they have the tools to remove the paint), people in the neighbourhood can help. A community day to clean up graffiti can be arranged with the council. It might not seem like a crime, but it is – it’s a form of vandalism.
Part of the process with a clean up is to try and make sure it doesn’t happen again. That means educating the young, and persuading them that they’re helping everyone around of they inform on those who tag buildings and other things. That’s not always easy, but the long-term results are worthwhile. It can also have an effect on vandalism and litter in the area.