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Neighbourhood Watch bolsters safety with focus on house-breaking <p>​</p><span><p>The Parow Valley Community Neighbourhood Watch was established in 2015 and has been working steadily to address crime prevention. During the patrol, a person was spotted with a blue plastic bag belonging to the City’s Solid Waste Management and when stopped, informed the officers that the bag had been bought. Law Enforcement staff requested the person to show where it was being sold, but upon arrival, the alleged trader denied selling the bags. Officials then noticed illegal building operations which were proceeding at the same site, where they instructed all activity to cease. Law Enforcement officers advised the property owner they would return today with the relevant building inspectors.<br><br>In a separate incident, Law Enforcement approached an industrial premises along with patrollers, to investigate a noise complaint and unruly behaviour. During the inspection of the site, it became apparent that the prepaid electricity meter had been tampered with and this was referred to the City’s Electricity Department for their further attention.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:943px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>The Parow Valley Community Neighbourhood Watch noted their biggest concern was house-breaking and this needed more attention. <br>‘House-breaking is the most significant area of concern. We need more of the community involved and also greater support from law enforcement agencies such as SAPS to target crime in this community. We wake up in the morning with the thought of our community and how we can improve safety through visibility. There are challenges in patrolling, but we do this from the heart and that motivates us to patrol our communities,’ said Chairperson of the Parow Valley Community Neighbourhood Watch Chairperson, Joe Murray. <br>The series of Neighbourhood Watch (NHW) support visits were started in February this year to offer ways to assist these community-based groups and to encourage increased community participation in various areas across the City. </p><p>‘The NHW mentioned that there is an increase in robberies and house breaking in this community. These NHW members have one goal in mind and that is the safety of their communities and their families. This neighbourhood watch group does great work to help prevent crime and I want to encourage them to keep going as it is clear that visibility and a NHW presence that is known in the community, leads to positive effects. However, we would like more residents to join this NHW to increase its positive impact,’ said Cape Town Executive Mayor Dan Plato. </p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:832px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>Although the Law Enforcement department’s main functions are by-law enforcement and addressing traffic violations, they are playing an increasingly broader role in joining the local communities to prevent crime. However, the South African Police Service is the primary law enforcement agency, supported in the Cape Town metro by the City’s Law Enforcement and Metro Police. <br><br>Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith said: ‘The NHW have an impressive collection of items they’ve recovered that would-be criminals could have used in house breaking incidents. They also recovered drug paraphernalia, which is no longer on the street and that is a win for everyone as we battle the on-going scourge in our City. This NHW is an example of how residents getting involved in their communities can have a positive impact. The City is here to offer our support and encourage more participation because engaged and active residents are the lifeblood of a NHW.’<br>NHW groups across the City have been active for more than a decade and have seen encouraging growth, with thousands of members now part of key crime prevention efforts within their respective communities. </p><p>NHW members can also become members of the Volunteer Law Enforcement Auxiliary Service (LEAS). Eight years ago, the LEAS was launched by the Safety and Security Directorate, and encourages prospective volunteers to first join their local NHW, before being recruited as a LEAS volunteer. <br><br>The Law Enforcement Auxiliaries Programme allows registered neighbourhood watch patrollers to apply. Once trained and equipped, these voluntary Law Enforcement officers can directly assist their NHWs with the powers of a peace officer, which further enhances safety within their own communities. </p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:805px;" /> </figure></span><p>The public can anonymously report any suspicious activity to the Public Emergency Communication Centre on 021 480 7700 from a cellphone, or 107 from a landline. Complaints of non-compliance with Covid-19 regulations can be directed to the City’s compliance hotline on 021 444 3582.</p><p><strong>Caption 1</strong>: From left, Executive Mayor Dan Plato, Ward Cllr Franchesca Walker, Alderman JP Smith and Parow Valley Community Neighbourhood Watch Chairperson , Joe Murray patrol the area. <br><strong>Caption 2 & 3</strong>: Weapons and items used in attempted house break-ins that the Parow Valley Community Neighbourhood Watch have recovered in recent months.</p><p><br><strong>End</strong></p><span>​​</span><span>​​</span><span>​​</span>2021-05-23T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#f1ee27f5-75b9-4162-a529-5e00bb03af44;L0|#0f1ee27f5-75b9-4162-a529-5e00bb03af44|Parow;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#282872ae-35e1-439f-97ba-12ac7e2b10d4;L0|#0282872ae-35e1-439f-97ba-12ac7e2b10d4|neighbourhood watch10

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