Neighborhood Watch programs help keep communities safe. So it should come as no surprise that many cities are encouraging, and even coordinating, Neighborhood Watch programs.
Police and sheriff's departments encourage Neighborhood Watch programs and sponsor educational programs to help communities learn more about preventing and fighting crime.
By definition, a Neighborhood Watch is a program of systematic local vigilance by residents of a neighborhood to discourage crime, especially burglary.
The Watch works best when residents focus on simply getting to know each other. This sense of community and familiarity is what will allow community members to pick up on suspicious or odd activity in passing.
Talk to your neighbors to find out who else is also interested. Obviously, the more residents involved, the better the chances for a successful Neighborhood Watch. You don’t need 100% of the community to participate, but you will need enough members to be able to keep a comprehensive eye on things.
Yes - Typically there is a Block Captain. It is the Block Captain’s role to find volunteers, maintain the neighborhood map and incident reports, set up meetings, and to stay in communication with local police when an incident occurs.
It is important to note that the Watch does not operate on behalf of local law enforcement and should not engage in any precarious situations. Engaging in a situation is not only dangerous, but can open yourself up to a slew of lawsuits.
The Neighborhood Watch’s goal is to utilize “eyes-and-ears” training to aid local police when reporting a crime. Just because your community has an active Neighborhood Watch does not mean you have the authority to make arrests or act as though you are a member of the police force.
No. Use of weapons are not a part of Neighborhood Watch programs and is strongly discouraged.
The reason they work is simple: One of the best ways to deter crime and
vandalism in a community is to create a network of neighbors looking out for
Neighborhood Watch is a very simple approach to helping keep your neighborhood safe. All you need is the participation of a few community members and you’re already up and running.
If you have any questions about setting up a Watch in your community, don’t hesitate to send us a message at email@example.com.
Many people want as few rules as possible, but the fact is that rules help create order out of chaos, they provide for protection of others and for the good of the group.
However, sometimes rules become outdate or were never fully thought through in the first place. These things happen and there is a way to alleviate the unnecessary burden of rules that don’t make any sense.
If you do not like an association rule, bring it to the attention of the Board. It’s their job to review the complaint so it’s best to present the issue in a well thought out logical manner that touches on all the positives and negatives that exist around that rule.
However, just because you are unhappy with a rule and/or have filed a grievance with the board to review a rule you don’t believe should be in place, it is still a rule that needs to be followed while it is on the books.
Local government also has rules that apply to you. For example: Usually, local government restricts the number of people who can occupy your home or there might be zoning requirements that limit your ability to use your home as a place of business. These rules are just as important to follow as the association rules. Make sure you are aware of all the regulations that coincide with living in an HOA and the local government.
Your home may be your castle but the association is the king of laws. Whether the rule was made by your association or local government, they are typically there for a purpose. Give each rule the benefit of the doubt. Understand the reason for rules governing the close living environment of a community association. If you have looked closely into a rule that you don’t see to be necessary, point it out to the board to take into consideration for review.