Neighborhood Watch encourages residents to engage with your neighbors, practice crime prevention measures, report suspicious activity, and partner with law enforcement.
The basic idea is for neighbors to watch out for each other and each other's property. By getting to know your neighbors and their vehicles, you will most likely be alert to suspicious people, vehicles, and/or sounds that could be a sign of criminal activity.
The major components include:
- Neighborhood Get-togethers. Have a least one meeting or block party a year.
- Communication system. The email group, telephone tree, and other forms of social media such as Nextdoor are excellent forms of communicating with neighbors. Neighbors can quickly be alerted to crimes in their area.
- Organization. Select the chairman and block captains (if needed). The chairman provides leadership for the Watch group and acts as the contact person between the neighborhood and law enforcement.t
- Distribution of crime prevention materials and handouts.
If you are interested in finding out more information or want to start a Neighborhood Watch in your area, contact your local police agency. Their Neighborhood Watch representative can mail you information on the program, explain what is involved, and assist you in starting one in your neighborhood. Once you have an interested group of neighbors, you will schedule a meeting with your local law enforcement to establish the purpose of the program, begin to identify issues that need to be addressed, train members in home security and reporting skills, and provide information on crime in that area.
Any community resident can be involved – young or old, single or married, renter or homeowner. Even the busiest of people can belong to Neighborhood Watch and keep an eye out for neighbors.
Know your neighbors. Watch out for each other, work together, and communicate with your neighbors. Partner with law enforcement by reporting suspicious activity and remember to practice good safety habits.
- Be informed and aware of area crime activity.
- Incorporate crime prevention strategies by lighting up your residence, locking your home and vehicles, and closing your blinds/drapes in the evening.
- Note license plate numbers and description of suspicious vehicles and persons.
- Report criminal and suspicious activity, and victimizations to the police department, and then to your Watch chairman.