Improved police relations is a key component to the safety of the Industry community. In creating a safe community, this initiative focuses on improved police relations and the creation of a partnership between the community and the Muncie Police Department. Using both the community and local police force, this initiative focuses on improving the frequency of police patrols and enforcement of ordinances.
Why this is important
Citizens at the January 2015 meeting expressed concern over police relations and the enforcement of city ordinances in Industry. While the community does feel safe, they do not feel as happy as they could be because of noise and ordinance violations. This initiative was given a high priority level by the residents and students.
What this will involve
In order to improve police relations and increase patrols, a partnership between the neighborhood, neighborhood association, and Muncie Police Department is essential a neighborhood watch program is advised.
In order to establish a successful neighborhood watch program, there are five essential steps:
- Gather a number of neighbors interested in improving the neighborhood
- Schedule a meeting the Muncie Police Department
- Discuss community concerns and develop an action plan
- Hold regular meetings with volunteers and officer liaison where training occurs
- Implement a phone tree and complete action items
Critical to the success of a neighborhood watch program is enthusiasm and presence. Regular meetings that cover new topics will help the neighborhood stay energized. Additionally, neighborhood watch is not just about preventing crime but also about being prepared for disasters and emergencies.
Sample issues to address
- Home security (locks, lighting, windows, etc.)
- Disaster preparedness (tornado, blizzard, acts of terror, etc.)
- Property inventory (documenting valuables)
- Communication with neighbors
- Code enforcement (what the code is, how to address / report it)
The neighborhood watch program can incorporate the neighborhood stewards as people look after each other. When the community knows each other, it is more likely to care for each other, which is the goal of a neighborhood watch program as defined by the Bureau of Justice Assistance.
Contact information for assistance sources
Department of Community Development
300 N. High St. City Hall
Muncie, IN 47305-1639
Phone: (765) 747-4825
Fax: (765) 747-4898
Contact: Terry Whitt Bailey
Muncie Police Department
Case Study One
In 2000, Chicago published a special report about improving relations between police and minority communities. Focusing on teamwork, the police sat down with the community leaders and listened. The police reacted to the communities concerns and working together they developed a clear understanding of issues and perceptions of the police relations. They established targets that include: communication, respect, accountability, freedom from fear, and trust. With these targets, the police force established changes and shared them with the community. The key was that information was shared as the partnership expanded. This has been successful because it makes sense.
Case Study Two
In Lake Havasu City, Arizona, the neighborhood watch coordinator uses meetings to inform the residents about what is happening in their community. She contends that an informed community is a safe community. The community uses a crimes reporting service in order to inform the community. The $2 annual dues for the neighborhood watch fund the program. It has been successful in creating a neighborhood that cares for each other.