PALESTINE, Texas (March 2, 2017) – The Palestine Police Department is announcing an upcoming initiative to facilitate Neighborhood Watch programs throughout the city.
The Neighborhood Watch program has been in existence as a mainstream community involvement initiative since 1972. The main purpose of these programs is to create a partnership between the citizens in a local neighborhood and law enforcement, and empower the citizens with the ability to effectively improve the quality of life in the neighborhoods in which they live. The members of a Neighborhood Watch program participate in methods of crime prevention, as well as proactive problem solving in their own neighborhoods.
The Palestine Police Department wants to cultivate these partnerships and work with the community to foster crime prevention and help improve the quality of life for the citizens of our city. By utilizing Neighborhood Watch programs, the citizens are enabled to make effective contributions to the safety and serenity of their own communities, and assist Law Enforcement simultaneously.
The first Neighborhood Watch meeting will be held at 6 p.m. on March 15 at the City of Palestine Council Chambers, 504 N. Queen St.
“The Neighborhood Watch initiative is an excellent program that allows the citizens to be directly involved in the security of their own community,” said Interim Chief of Police John Herod. “Research has shown that communities that participate in Neighborhood Watch programs and observe and report suspicious activity have experienced a reduced crime rate.”
The intent of the first meeting is to provide information to any citizen, or group of citizens from a neighborhood, on the Neighborhood Watch program and to begin to provide start-up assistance for these initiatives. There will be additional meetings to continue facilitating the watch groups and to further the partnership with the community. Once Neighborhood Watch groups have been established, small group specific meetings can be held, with involvement from the citizens and the Palestine Police Department.
“This program fits seamlessly with the Community Policing model, as does some of our current programs, such as Citizens on Patrol and Coffee with a Cop,” Herod said. “We as an agency want to work fluidly with the community to solve problems in their neighborhoods and we realize the importance of the citizen’s involvement in the quality of life in our city. We hope that this initiative and other programs to come will prove to be successful and promote a continuous improvement in our relationship with the public.”
For further information on this program, or any other community policing event, please contact Community Services Liaison Bernadette Knowles-Capron at 903-731-8614.