WESTVILLE COMMUNITY POLICING FORUM
Change of Policy for CPF
This article was transferred from old site "This and That July 2007
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from old site "This & That" July 2007
SA should aim to put twice as many criminals in prison.
Extract from Sunday Times /Antony Altbeker. June 24 2007.
"Change of policy for CPF."
Government policy proposals include the following.
Community oversight over the entire criminal justice system – police courts and prisons. – Through newly invigorated and renamed "Community Safety Forums" Inexplicably this would also help to oversee the Dept. of Home Affairs. Ideas offered range from helping the government departments design campaigns against crime to running workshops on the Constitution and the Domestic Violence act. The problem arises that little enough oversight is done by many community police forums already, and expanding their mandate will dilute this further.
Apart from these practical difficulties, one really has to ask whether the correct lesson to draw from the experience of the past 13 years is that community forums are the most effective way to get the biggest bang from our criminal - justice buck
The unitary structure of the SAPS, which must be one of the biggest organisations on the whole continent, that makes meaningful oversight and accountability impossible."
I have endeavoured to improve the service delivery to the public for over 7 years in the following area.
All victims and witnesses to an armed robbery should have the opportunity to view Composite ID’s of criminals involved in similar crimes in the Durban area. If possible encouraged to assist in the composition of Composite ID, s. I have engaged in communication with station commanders, area committees, area commanders and the relevant department in Pretoria. One does not even receive a letter of acknowledgement or a thank you for your proposal.
If this has not been fruitful then I do not see how less well-organised committee’s will have any success as Community Safety Forums. Remember we are all volunteers / unpaid.
I believe that Westville CPF is one of the best in South Africa. We publish the Westville Watch – there is the SMS crime report from the station daily – we have a web page – and a dedicated Station Superintendent. There is always a guest speaker. Our public meetings attract 30/40 persons a month. Other CPF’s do not function or have attendance of 5-10 persons.
Keep safe. Neil Hannam.
PS. Why is it that you do not support our meetings? Are you a victim or a volunteer
Crime has increased but we have reduced this or that by so many percent etc. But how do you know how many if you are not aware of the base line number. When I look at the effort put in by our station, the number of times the helicopter zooms overhead one may wonder why it has not been reduced. I ask you to examine the crime figures on the SMS pages, what catches you eye.
To me the most dangerous figure is the number of house break-ins during the night. You have criminals entering your house whilst you and your family are asleep. Come on guys, surly you should by now you should have strengthen your defenses to the extent that you would be aware of criminal activity.
Are your outside light swathed on so that your vehicle (if in the garden) and your surrounds are illuminated. Criminals like dark places.
What is you weakest point of entry. Your long wooden window with old fashioned steel bars secured with small wood screws. Fitted 30 years ago by a carpenter, when crime was almost unheard of. Also the wood has dried out. The screw has no holding power and is easily forced from the frame.
Then of course you leave the window open for your kitty to come in. Mate he should either be IN or OUT. Close the damn window as that is the first attraction for entry.
Empty houses, when you are out is a different scenario. Noise is not a problem as no one notices some hammering or glass breaking. Its just my neighbour doing some repairs you think. After all you do not know you neighbour and he does not know you. Well I mean to say you have lived next door and you do not know his name or telephone number. Is it no wonder that criminals are ripping us apart because we are so insular. I suggest you check out the photo pages to observe what intruders can do to your property and possessions. You are the first line of defense, not the SAPS
Oh in case I forgot ACTIVATE YOUR ALARM and TEST IT REGULARLY. You have paid the money, use it. Just popping to the shop or picking up the children from school is enough reason for you to secure your house and switch on the alarm.
TRUE STORY. neighbours phoned the police and a patrol was sent rushing over to the potential housebreak-ing. A crew of Africans (I know they are all*%$#@*'s you think). Well what had happened was that alterations were starting and the owner had not bothered to advise his neighbour that he was expecting workmen to arrive. Police time wasted again. Neighbours not looking out for one another. Its time we changed our attitude.
News paper letter.
There was a call for the Minister of S & S to resign as crime has not been reduced as promised ."Maybe we should pay the minister more money as the adage "pay peanuts and you get monkeys rings true. It certainly seems to be in this case.