There was once a time when children could play outdoors in their neighborhoods until dark, and parents didn’t have to worry or fear for their safety. Sadly, those days are gone for most cities and communities. Crime continues to rise in major cities. In 2020, there was an increase in violent crimes in 63 out of 66 of the largest police jurisdictions.
While this news can be disheartening, it doesn’t mean that you can’t make your neighborhood a safer place for your family and your neighbors. A safer neighborhood isn’t only about protecting your community against violent crimes but from nonviolent crimes like burglary, vandalism, and drug abuse as well. Here are four ways to create a safer neighborhood for a family community.
When everyone looks out for one another, your neighborhood will be a lot safer. For example, organizing a neighborhood watch program where neighbors share and report suspicious incidents and activities via an app or phone call can significantly increase the security and safety of your neighborhood and its residents.
A neighborhood watch program should also include tips on how to improve your neighborhood for better security. For example, teach residents the benefits of keeping trees, hedges, and other plants trimmed to limit hiding places for burglars and thieves.
Knowing your neighbors is crucial to creating a safer community. Get to know all of your neighbors on some level. While you don’t have to be BFF’s with everyone, you should know them on a first-name basis and learn a little about their family and employment. When new neighbors move in, invite them over for tea, coffee, or a BBQ to get to know them better. You don’t want a drug dealer or sex offender moving in next door without knowing, so use your instincts when meeting new neighbors.
Vagrants, drug users, and other people with bad intentions love abandoned houses and vacant lots for illegal activity. Secure vacant lots and abandoned homes with chain link fencing, and secure the gate with a strong lock. A chain-link fence offers an unobstructed view, so neighborhood residents can see anyone loitering or attempting to gain access to the property.
You can also add cameras to areas that need more security. Finally, make sure you post signs to let anyone in the area know they’re under surveillance. Posting signs act as a deterrent for criminal behavior and make your community a much safer place.
Most criminal activity is done in the darkness, where it’s difficult to be seen. Even minor crimes like vandalism, graffiti, and car break-ins occur primarily at night. Speak with your neighbors and consider adding motion sensor lighting to dark areas of your neighborhood.
It takes a group effort to make a community safer for everyone, and it only takes one person to get the ball rolling. By following some of the tips listed above, you can create a safer community for your family and those of your neighbors.