The Friends of Midtown Public Safety Committee is exploring the potential of instituting neighborhood foot patrols. In order to be successful, we need a sizeable group of volunteers. To gauge potential interest, we’ll be holding a citizen foot patrol briefing on Thursday, Apr. 21, at the Heinz-Menaker Senior Center, starting at 6pm.Below is a brief outline of the purpose and goals of citizen driven foot patrols:
What is a Community Foot Patrol?
A Foot Patrol is a trained group of volunteers organized to increase the safety and livability of their neighborhood. They walk their neighborhood streets to deter crime and report incidents and problems, rather than sit back and hope that someone else will take care of any crime or livability problems. Foot Patrol members are actively and directly involved in solving those problems in a community-based, non-confrontational manner. Foot Patrols collaborate with the City’s Bureau of Police, neighborhood coalitions and associations, and area businesses to help make sure that neighborhood problems receive a prompt and effective response.
Purpose of Foot Patrols Community Foot Patrols have several purposes:
- To help reduce crime and the fear of crime by providing a visible presence as a deterrent to criminal activity. Having concerned patrol members’ actively watching sends a message in the neighborhood that crime will not be tolerated. Criminals don’t wish to be observed, so the presence of alert, trained volunteers can deter and prevent some crimes. Additionally, residents begin to feel a sense of safety knowing that neighbors care and are concerned about the safety and security of the area.
- To report suspicious or illegal activities. The police and crime prevention staff rely on patrols to tell them about crime incidents and suspects. These patrols can provide timely information which can prevent crime from occurring or help apprehend criminals.
- To report livability problems. A Foot Patrol is in a good position to notice and report graffiti and other vandalism, abandoned vehicles, illegal dump sites, camping, evidence of drug dealing or manufacturing, street drinking, and other liquor violations.
- To promote positive communication and relationships within a neighborhood. Community Foot Patrols provide an avenue for neighbors to get to know one another and build a sense of community.
In order for this endeavor to be successful, we must have a sizable volunteer compliment to carry out the responsibilities. Towards that end, we want to gauge the potential volunteer base within FOM and the Midtown community.
On April 21 the Public Safety Committee will hold a Citizen Foot Patrol briefing at 6:00 PM at the Heinz-Menaker Senior Center, 1824 N. 4th Street. If you are interested in learning more about community foot patrols or becoming a volunteer, please let us know if you will be attending the meeting by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. If unable to attend and you would like additional information, let us know and we will email it to you.