About Block Watch
In recent decades, policing has changed dramatically. Historically, police have used a reactive style of law enforcement. In other words, they responded to your complaints. A growing population, budget cuts, and other factors have forced them to rely on you, the public, more than ever. Consequently, community policing has arrived. The police are establishing a base within communities in an effort to fight crime on an altogether different level. In 1986, this model of community policing led to the development of Block Watch. Block Watch works out of West Vancouver Police department.
- Block Watch is a way to have neighbours watch and communicate with each other and police
- Block Watch involves being alert
- Block Watch involves being aware of your neighbour's property as you would your own, and a committment to reporting suspicious activity to your police (non-emergency / 911) and neighbours
- Your involvement and leadership is the key to success
What Block Watch is
Block Watch is an extension of what you may already be doing on a daily basis. many of us have watched our neighbour's home for them when they are away or at work, as a favour. Under Block Watch that watchfulness is broadened and becomes more systematic. All residents on a block get to know each other through participation and communication to keep an eye out for each other.
Block Watch involves being alert as part of your everyday life. For example, when you go to a window to close the drapes, take the time to look around the neighbourhood. Ensure everything is as it should be. Talk to your neighbours to keep them aware of current crime prevention techniques and news of local crime trends.
The Program involves two commitments:
- to be concerned about your neighbour's property as you would your own.
- to report suspicious or criminal activity to the police and to your neighbours.
What Block Watch Isn't
- Block Watch does not require you to perform special tasks or go to a lot of meetings.
- You do not patrol the neighbourhood or chase burglars.
- You aren't required to live in your neighbour's hip pocket. You can still conduct your life in privacy.
- Block Watch doesn't require that you be any friendlier than you want to be.
- Block Watch isn't just for homeowners. The tips and techniques are equally valuable to tenants.
Aims & Objectives of the Program
- Reduce residential crime
- Improve Police / Public relations by "working together"
- Establish a sense of community within neighbourhoods
- Make our community a better place to live, work and raise our children
As a Captain or Co-Captain
You ARE ...
- a neighbourhood communication consultant
- the liaison between West Vancouver Police and your block neighbours
You ARE NOT ...
- the neighbourhood patrol
- responsible for the security of your neighbours
- expected to give up any privacy