Sometimes it can feel like crime prevention is something that only communities without a major crime problem can participate in. If your only crime is a few rowdy kids egging their neighbor’s house or drawing crude pictures on the sidewalk once in a while, it’s a simple enough matter to band together to take care of it. (Especially since you probably already know who the kids in question are and can just walk down the street and have a chat with their parents.)
But if you live in a rough neighborhood, things are different. Walking down the street to chat with your neighbor isn’t a good idea during certain times of the day. The good part is you don’t have to feel like this, there are actions that all of us can take to keep ourselves, our children, and our neighbors safer, no matter where we live. There are always options.
There is power in numbers.
Yes, it can be frightening to fight against neighborhood crime when you’re all alone, but working together is much safer. Can you attend a community meeting or organize a vigil? If there is neighborhood support, could you start a Neighborhood Watch group? Remember, just because you’re having a meeting doesn’t mean you have to have it in the neighborhood. It could be at a library, school, or place of worship that’s outside of the immediate area if that makes it more safe for people to attend.
People aren’t comfortable with starting a group with the explicit purpose of fighting crime? That doesn’t mean you’re on your own. There are many organizations that already exist for the purpose of improving the community in some way that you can join. The PTA is an option; what’s better for our students than safer streets? Organizations like the Rotary or the Lions Club are focused on community service; show them how they can be of service close to home.
Churches, fraternities and sororities, social clubs, even sports teams can be sources of engagement. Nobody looks askance at a man hanging out with his recreational soccer team. If that soccer team goes on regular jogs through the neighborhood together? Well, that’s just conditioning. If they keep their eyes peeled for criminal activity at the same time, that’s just a bonus.
Fighting fear with anonymity.
Even with large numbers of people, many will not feel comfortable getting involved publicly. They might already be on thin ice with criminals in the area. They might have vulnerable family members they need to protect. These are entirely understandable reasons to not want to associate with a group, even a large one.
But even people who can’t put themselves out there in a visible way can still get involved thanks to modern technology. Unlike the past, there’s no reason to go down to the police station to report crimes. You don’t even need to make a phone call that can be traced to your home.
Torch is an app that allows people to report crimes and suspicious activity with 100% anonymity. You don’t even need to speak out loud to use it. If someone has a smartphone, they can sit inside their home and share whatever information they have. Torch then sends this straight to the agency that is responsible for that kind of tip. Your name and even your phone number never even need to become involved.
Violent crime IS frightening.
But the fact that we’re afraid doesn’t mean we can’t act. Let Torch help light the fire of hope in your neighborhood, and we’ll walk forward, together.
Download Torch today and start making your community a safer place.