Starting a Block Watch Program

Starting a Block Watch

To start a Block Watch program in your neighborhood:

  1. Obtain an informational packet and an application from the Community Service Officer. Determine geographical boundaries for the neighborhood.
  2. Contact neighbors and gather interest in the program.
  3. Set a meeting with interested neighbors to explain and encourage participation in program. Fifty percent of the neighborhood is required to participate in the program. Elect captain and co-captain to act as a liaison with the police. Create contact list and mark valuables in the home. If requested, an officer can be scheduled to attend meeting to help explain the program.
  4. Bring completed application, diagram of neighborhood indicating neighbors participating, copy of contact list, and schedule of upcoming meetings to the Community Service Sergeant.

Requirements for an Active Block Watch? 

The requirements for having an active Block Watch include:

  • Having scheduled meetings for the Block Watch participants
  • Keeping an up to date contact list of participating neighbors
  • Participation in Operation Identification (marking valuables with driver’s license number)
  • Maintaining 50% participation in designated neighborhood

How to Keep Your Block Watch Active

  • Organize regular meetings that focus on current issues (i.e. grow ops, youth and alcohol, theft from autos, etc.)
  • Adopt a park, playground or street. Pick up litter, paint over graffiti, etc.
  • Don’t forget social events that give neighbors a chance to know each other: A block party, potluck dinner, volley ball or soft ball game, picnic, food drive for the food bank, etc.

Sample Block Watch Participant Letter

Dear Block Watch Participants,

Here are some simple techniques to assist you and your neighbors improving the safety and security of your neighborhood. Please practice these techniques and teach them to your family:

  • Be alert and call 9-1-1 when you see suspicious activity.
  • Install deadbolt locks on all exterior doors and use them.
  • Secure all windows with quality locks as well.
  • Turn on your outside lights at night, every night!
  • If you have a residential burglar alarm, use it!
  • Do not give out personal information to anyone you don’t know. Cross-shred all documents with any personal information.
  • Close your garage door whether you are home or away.
  • Lock all vehicles parked outside. Remove all valuables and garage door openers.
  • Notify a trusted neighbor or family member if you are away. Leave them emergency contact information. Stop newspapers and mail delivery. Have your lawn mowed or snow shoveled while you are away.