Thursday, October 18, 2018

October 15, 2018 Council Meeting Notes: Crime Prevention Task Group recommendations approved

Over the past two years, I have chaired Langley City’s Crime Prevention Task Group. The task group’s mandate is wrapping up next month. Based on the work we have done over the past year, we presented a series of motions for council to consider to ensure that the City continues to support programs that help reduce crime.

One of the best ways to help reduce the types of crime that we see in Langley City is to build strong neighbourhood identities which fosters people to get to know each other. This creates a sense of ownership. This ownership supports people taking more active roles in helping to prevent and reduce crime in their neighbourhoods by reporting suspicious activities to the RCMP, and by forming Block Watch groups.

This summer, we piloted a “Know Your Neighbor Campaign.” This awareness campaign was a success which is why the task group recommended:

THAT Council consider striking a task group to plan an annual “Know Your Neighbour” campaign.

During this year’s campaign, we received information from people who were interested in the Block Watch program. A motion was required to be approved by council to pass this information along to the RCMP, so the task group recommended:

THAT Council direct staff to forward the contact information collected from residents interested in becoming part of a Block Watch Program to Superintendent Murray Power, OIC of the Langley RCMP detachment, and that the OIC request the Block Watch Program staff to contact the interested residents in order to potentially increase the number of Block Watch neighbourhood programs in Langley City.

One of the things that the people who volunteered heard at the door was that people where uncomfortable calling the RCMP Non-Emergency Number, or didn’t know the number, to report suspicious activities. The task group recommended:

THAT the Crime Prevention Task Group request that Council write a letter to the Langley RCMP Officer in Charge and to E-Comm asking that they work to better promote, and encourage the public to call, the RCMP Non-Emergency number to report all suspicious activity.

In order to support continued public engagement around crime prevention, the task group also recommended:

THAT the Crime Prevention Task Group request that Council direct the City’s Communication Officer to continue, on an annual basis, to fan out public safety awareness information on social media during Public Safety Week in November each year.

All the recommendations were approved by council on Monday night. To learn more about the work that the task group has done over the last few years, please read a series of my previous posts.

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