Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Neighborhood Patrol

I am not sure how much this helps lower the overall crime rate but I see cars and even bikes marked with the bright yellow sign "Neighborhood Patrol" quite often here. To top it off there are lots of posters around. Some posters warn the children to not trust strangers while some, just like the one I took a picture of (this one actually is pasted right at the entrance to my apartment building) is more to warn the potential "bad guy". Note the manga style drawings with characters looking all serious and the translations of the message "this neighborhood will not tolerate any offense!" in English, Korean and Chinese. I guess they really want to make sure the point is not lost on the potential offenders even if they are foreigners ;)

1 comment:

Betty said...

We have this in Canada too, Vancouver specifically. We call it Block Watch. The police department actually divides us into regions, mine consisted of a block and 4 houses across the intersection. Then it's up to each region to organize and someone to step up to be captain. If it happens, then government put up signs to mark that region has block watch.
We have block watch meetings 2-3 times a year and the block watch captain announces information the local police officer has told her of crimes in nearby areas and prevention tips, e.g. we all chipped in to get an encraver to encrave our driver's license on all precious things in the house so we can get the stuff back if thieves pawn it. She also distributes a map of which family is living in which house, the rep for each family and phone number, so if you see something suspicious but not sure if it's a thief, you can call the family. Apparently there are a lot of cases where a neighbour does see something suspicious happening but not sure if it is a thief and err on not wasting police time and not call police. It's also very useful for cases where you see smoke or hear yelling and not sure if there is an emergency. We had a family in our neighbourhood which had a lot of yelling and we were worried if there was domestic abuse.