What is Block Watch?
Block Watch is a free program offered by the Oak Bay Police Department in an effort to build safer communities throughout the Municipality of Oak Bay. Block Watch, through training, education and communication, aims to reduce the opportunity for property offences (ie. Break and enters, thefts, thefts from autos and vandalism) within a neighbourhood. By having a unified commitment, participating communities can be proactive in promoting safety for themselves, their families and their neighbours.
How does Block Watch work?
Block Watch is a neighbour-helping-neighbour program. Residents on a block form a communication chain aided by a block map of names, numbers and addresses. They watch out for each other’s homes and report suspicious activity to the police and to each other, to reduce the likelihood of residential crime.
What are the Benefits of Block Watch?
- Not only will your receive the benefits of reducing crime and feeling safer in your community, but a sense of belonging and pride in your neighbourhood.
- A greater sense of community
- Practical information on home security, risk reduction and reporting
- Direct information (fan out) on property crime in and around participating neighbourhoods
- Positive community/police relation through pro-active policing
- Quarterly Block Watch newsletters
- Visibility as participants in the program
- Discounts on home insurance premiums (5%-15%)
Six Steps to a Successful Block Watch:
- Look out for and help one another
- Upgrade your security hardware (to withstand a 45 second constant attack)
- Mark your property with your BC driver’s License number
- Notify Police of criminal activity
- Notify your block captain for crime fan-out
- Hold annual Block Watch meeting for the street
How to get a Block Watch Started?
- Contact the Oak Bay Police at 250-592-2424 for an application package
- Return completed application to be processed (NO canvassing until application is accepted)
- Once accepted, meet with Block Watch coordinator to receive a canvassing package
- Canvass your neighbours and complete a map and participation list (50% participation required)
Have initial block meeting:
- Hosted by Block Captain or Co-Captain
- Distribute maps, certificates, and Block Watch decals
- Presentation by Block Watch office if representative available
- For more information please contact the Block Watch Coordinator at 250-592-2424