Crime can have negative effects on community morale as well as business growth and development. Fear of being victimized by crime affects purchasing habits, community involvement and tourism. Preventing crime is the responsibility of those who seek a safe, peaceful environment. Learning effective ways to deter crime is the first step to securing and maintaining low crime rates.
Stay informed of crime legislation initiatives. Contact your local representatives to get the latest information regarding new proposals. Encourage your leaders to vote for bills that target crime and protect communities. Examples of these types of bills include legislation for harsher sentencing guidelines and initiatives to enact curfews for underage citizens.
Stay involved in the community. Participate in neighborhood watch programs to stay proactive in crime prevention in your immediate surroundings. Volunteer time and money to social programs that help at-risk youth. Programs like Big Brothers Big Sisters of America provide mentors to young people in need of positive influences. These activities help deter crime as well as guide the actions of youth.
Report criminal offenses to the authorities. Take note of suspicious activities that occur inside and outside your neighborhood. Contact the police with eyewitness information such as a suspect description to assist law enforcement in their crime prevention efforts. Avoid looking the other way when criminal offenses occur. You could find yourself in need of another citizen’s assistance if you become a crime victim.
Secure your valuables. Use monitored alarm systems to protect your home and vehicle. Avoid leaving high-priced items in plain view of others. Store yard and portable items in your garage when you’re not home. Use a heavy duty lock to protect your bicycle from theft. Never flaunt large amounts of cash or jewelry to people you don’t know well.
Travel with a group. Use the strength of numbers to help prevent crime. Never go to unfamiliar places by yourself, especially at night. Bring a cell phone and extra money for emergency use. Walk along well-lit paths when traveling outside.
Encourage the local police to increase the frequency of patrols in crime-ridden areas.
Never try to apprehend a suspect. Let the police handle this responsibility. Never assume that any location is totally safe. Always remain cautious of suspicious people and activities.