Ottawa Neighbourhood Watch

Post date: Dec 19, 2017 3:37:53 PM

Neighbourhood Watch is a program to help neighbours watch out for neighbours. It aims to get citizens involved in discouraging and preventing crime at the local level. They are extra eyes and ears for reporting crime and helping each other. The ultimate success of Neighbourhood Watch depends largely on a commitment to cooperation between area residents and the police - and more importantly, between residents themselves.. They are extra eyes and ears for reporting crime and helping each other.

Your neighbours know who you are, what type of car you drive, and may be the first to notice a suspicious person at your door or window. A police officer patrolling your community may not recognize a stranger in your yard - but your neighbour will.

By simply getting to know the neighbours around you, you'll be well positioned to recognize someone or something that's suspicious.

What kind of activities should I be aware of?

§ Someone screaming or shouting for help.

§ Someone looking in windows of houses or parked cars.

§ Property being taken out of houses when no one is at home or from closed businesses.

§ Vehicles moving slowly for no apparent reason.

§ Anyone being forced into a vehicle. Strangers sitting in a car or stopping to talk to a child

Some common questions:

What if I forgot to lock my vehicle, front door and items are taken. Should I report it. Absolutely. If someone has been checking into your vehicle for items, they are committing a crime. You need to report it so that the Ottawa Police is made aware of potentially extra crimes in your neighbourhood

What are my responsibilities as a Watch Member?

§ Be alert!

§ Know your neighbors and watch out for each other.

§ Report crimes and suspicious activities to the Police.

With Neighbourhood Watch, you can learn:

  • how to make your home less inviting to thieves (free CPC consultation available)

  • to be aware of suspicious behavior and how to take appropriate action

  • how to participate in Operation Identification by marking your personal property

  • to encourage others to reduce or prevent local criminal activities

As a member, your only duty is to look out for your best interests and those of your family and neighbours. You could do this by:

ü keeping your own home secure

ü monitoring your neighbour's homes during their absences

ü being a good neighbour, the kind you would like to have living next door

ü taking appropriate action when a crime is suspected

"Neighbourhood Watch? No offence, but I value my privacy. I mind my own business and I expect my neighbours to do the same. What's wrong with that?"

Nothing at all. We all value our privacy. But Neighbourhood Watch is simply a program designed to help neighbourhood crime - it could be vandalism, physical assault, or whatever is deemed as suspicious or a crime in progress. One of the ways you can help achieve this goal is by being alert to the behavior of strangers. A Watch makes it a whole lot easier to identify strangers once you get to know your neighbours and for this reason, watched neighbours tend to be more cohesive, caring communities. So, bottom line, it really comes down to deciding what kind of community you want to live in, and what level of participation makes it work for you.

To sign up as a member (it's free!) of the Bel Air Community Neighbourhood Watch, to receive regular updates on crime activity in our neighbourhood, contact:

Suzanne Brown, Watch Coordinator, Bel Air