Working Together for Safety

By Ed Rast

Do you know what constitutes “Community Policing“ and how it reduces crime in San Jose?

The basic principal is to bring our many diverse neighborhoods, residents, and businesses together with their local beat officers to achieve a common goal. Community policing takes the view that police and citizens are co-producers of public safety services, jointly responsible for reducing crime and improving the quality of life in their neighborhoods. To get a better idea, have a look at this.

San Jose is known nationwide for our highly effective community policing programs like: Neighborhood Watch; Personal, Workplace, and Senior Safety; our many Crime Prevention programs; and National Night Out. You can visit the SJPD website to find out more.

Community attitudes toward police and fire officers can significantly affect the quality of public safety, especially in dense downtown, high-crime, and gang-heavy neighborhoods.

Our understaffed police depend heavily on neighbors to report criminal activity and help identify suspicious behavior. Cooperation like this is what gives San Jose a lower crime rate than almost every other large city in America.

Getting to know your local police officers face to face helps you understand their concerns and workload and helps them to understand the diverse people, issues, and concerns of the neighborhood they’re protecting. Misunderstandings occur when people do not reach out or communicate frequently.

Here are some examples of what you, your family, and your neighbors can do to help improve public safety in San Jose while growing the quality of life in your neighborhood:

  • • Let your neighborhood police officers know you appreciate their hard work keeping your neighborhood safe.
  • • Participate in community policing, including Neighborhood Watch and crime prevention programs.
  • • Attend your neighborhood association meeting, where time is often scheduled for residents and neighborhood police to discuss local crime issues and what can be done.
  • • Attend National Night Activities on Tuesday, August 4, 2009 (in most neighborhoods) Visit the SJPD website for more information.