Neighborhood Watch Tips
Neighborhood Watch is simply close neighbors (on the same block or street or near an intersection/landmark) watching out for each other during the workday, evenings, vacations or any other absence. It works through the mutual aid of neighbors watching the property of other neighbors. This has several advantages, including the fact that your neighbors know who you are, what type of car you drive, and who belongs, as a rule, at your residence. A patrol officer driving by your home might not recognize someone as a stranger in your yard. However, an alert neighbor would recognize the person as a stranger. They could then call 911 to alert police of the suspicious activity. Neighborhood Watch does not promote vigilantism.
If you are worried about your street, the best thing to do would be to set up a phone tree / text alert with concerned, nearby neighbors you trust. When there is trouble, call the police en masse. You could also set up a meeting with the police to talk about a problem property and discuss solutions. These are things that police have recommended at GSNA meetings. They have also provided lots of advice that people can take to protect their property all of the time so they become less of a target. Practicing that advice on a daily basis means you don’t have to wait to hear of a crime before you take action to protect yourself.
Keeping it together & positive
Now that you have your group of close neighbors formed, how do you keep the members interested and involved? One of the best aspects of an active Neighborhood Watch group is the opportunity it affords neighbors to get to know each other. Effective Neighborhood Watch groups hold block parties, BBQs, or other social and holiday events. These activities give neighbors a chance to meet and get to know each other. These events can be used to include new residents and introduce them to the neighbors. These activities help develop a sense of community among neighbors. Neighbors are much more likely to notice and report something amiss at the home of someone they know as opposed to someone they don’t. Try not to create a culture of fear. This leads to a perception that danger has increased, not our actual level of risk. Provide the advice people can use to protect their property and look out for each other.
Steps you can take: If you think something is out of the ordinary, report it to the Police. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Learn to recognize who belongs in your neighborhood and report any suspicious persons or vehicles to the SPD by calling 911. Call if something doesn’t look right. If you doubt the importance of your concern, Call Anyways… and let them assess it.
Make sure your own property (home & garage windows & doors and car) is secure and don’t leave valuables out in plain sight. That includes things like i-phones, purses, GPS devices, dvd players, duffle bags, briefcases, laptops and other things that are often left in cars.
Having close neighbors that look out for each other is central to fighting crime. Try to get the phone numbers (home & cell) of your close neighbors so you can look out for each other.
Be pro-active, alert, and prepared all of the time. Don’t wait for someone else to become a victim of crime before you make changes to make your property more secure.
Don’t respond to door-to-door solicitors. There are many community organizations that are available to help people in need. From time to time, we provide names of area kids that can help with yard work, etc so you don’t have to hire someone going door-to-door.
Always report Suspicious Activity to the Police by calling 911. Call if something doesn’t look right. If you doubt the importance of your concern, Call Anyways and let the police assess it.
If a crime has already occurred, always report it ! The police can’t do anything about it if they don’t know about it. They will also not know to increase patrols if activity is not being reported.
Let your elected officials know how much neighborhood safety and quality of life is important to you. Especially, if you are not satisfied. The Police Chief reports to the Mayor and the Common Council. The GSNA Board has asked many times for increased patrols and an officer dedicated to the neighborhood. Their info and other important phone numbers are listed below.
Local Officials and Contact Info
If it is on your mind and you want to see positive change, reach out to the appropriate officials. Keep in mind that the Mayor and Common Council have oversight of city departments, including the police. Let them know what is important to you. You can make a difference.
- CITY Help Line: 448-City (448-2489) Call this number about misc. city issues
- Mayor Stephanie Miner 448-8005 Mayor@SyrGov.net
- 3rd District Common Councilor – Susan Boyle 956-5544 email@example.com
- Common Council President – Van Robinson 448-8466 firstname.lastname@example.org
- Councilor At-Large – Joe Nicoletti 448-8466 email@example.com
- Councilor At Large – Jean Kessner 448-8466 firstname.lastname@example.org
- Councilor At Large – Steven Thompson 448-8466 email@example.com
- Councilor At Large – Helen Hudson 448-8466 firstname.lastname@example.org
- 15th District County Legislator – Ryan McMahon 435-2070 email@example.com
- Commissioner of Parks –Lazarus Sims, Commissioner, (315) 473-4330 ext. 3018
- Syracuse Code Enforcement – 448-8706 – CodeEnforcement@SyrGov.net
- Chief of Police – Frank Fowler 442-5250
- Police Dept – Emergency:911 Non-Emergency: (315) 442-5111 Information Desk: (315) 442-5200
- Neighborhood Watch of Syracuse: WATCHLINK (crime reporting): 442-LINK (5465) leave a message with details
- Corcoran High School – 435-4321
- SCSD Superintendent – Jaime Alicea, 435-4161, firstname.lastname@example.org
- SCSD Board of Education Commissioners:
- To sign-up for Strathmore emails sharing good news, meetings events, volunteer opportunities, and useful neighborhood watch tips, send an email to Strathmore.email@example.com