Crime Prevention: Neighborhood Watch
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Starting a Neighborhood Watch

Neighborhood Watch, Block Watch, Town Watch, Apartment Watch, Crime Watch -- no matter what it's called -- this is one of the most effective and least costly answers to crime. Watch groups are a foundation of community crime prevention, they can be a stepping stone to community revitalization.

Phase One: Getting Started -- Meetings, Block Captains and Maps

Form a small planning committee of neighbors to discuss needs, the level of interest, possible challenges, and the Watch concept.

Contact the local police or sheriffs' department, or local crime prevention organization, to discuss Neighborhood Watch and local crime problems. Invite a law enforcement officer to attend your meeting.

Publicize your meeting at least one week in advance with door-to-door fliers and follow up with phone calls the day before.

Select a meeting place that is accessible to people with disabilities.

Hold an initial meeting to gauge neighbors' interest; establish purpose of program; and begin to identify issues that need to be addressed. Stress that a Watch group is an association of neighbors who look out for each other's families and property, alert the police to any suspicious activities or crime in progress, and work together to make their community a safer and better place to live.
 

 
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