Neighborhood Watch EXPO
Atlanta Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit is hosting an expo featuring demonstrations on personal and home safety. The free event takes place Saturday, July 23, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Atlanta’s City Hall Atrium, 55 Trinity Ave., S.W., Atlanta, Georgia, 30303. Members of Atlanta’s various neighborhood watch organizations will receive credit for attending. The event is open to the public but attendees need to register. To sign up or for more information, contact Inspector C. Hines at firstname.lastname@example.org or 404-546-5713.
Anybody can become a victim of crime at any time so you need to be ready. So says Lt. D’Andrea Price, commander of the Atlanta Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit. On , July 23 Price and some city employees, as well as dozens of vendors, will be giving tips on how to keep from becoming a victim at the Neighborhood Watch EXPO at Atlanta City Hall. Demonstrations will focus on a range of issues, from self-defense techniques to gun safety to door and window locks. Atlanta Fire and Code Enforcement will be on hand offering ways to keep your safe at home. The free event is geared toward Atlanta residents but open to the general public.
Q: What are you trying to accomplish with these kinds of community events?
A: Bridge the gap between our community and the police. We have so many people who are afraid of the police for whatever reason. They may not trust the police and we have a duty to acquire that trust again. Because of recent news events, some people lump all police in with a few bad apples. We also have people who care about their communities and would like to work with the police but are scared of retaliation.
Q: What can people expect from the EXPO?
A: We are bringing people together to see exactly what crime prevention looks like. A lot of people learn visually and this is the perfect concept. We have given out pamphlets on home, vehicle and personal safety. We have conducted lectures. Now we are actually going to demonstrate how to be safe. Our code enforcement unit will be there to talk about how to keep up your home and neighborhoods safe and what resources are available for blighted properties. The fire department will provide information about fire safety and demonstrate how to use fire extinguishers and smoke detectors.
Q: Vendors will be doing demonstrations, too?
A: Demonstrations will be given by vendors such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, Stoddard’s Range and Guns, Divas in Defense and many more.
Q: Can anyone attend?
A: We are gearing the demonstrations toward city of Atlanta residents but anyone is welcome. We are requesting that anyone who plans to come to please register.
Q: You expect people from neighborhood watch groups. What do these groups bring to crime prevention?
A: We are trying to stress the creation of even more groups so we can have more eyes in the community. When I grew up, we knew everyone on the street and I feel that made for a stronger community. We have gotten away from that. Neighborhood watches are all about knowing who your neighbors are, watching out for one another.
Q: What is everyone’s responsibility when it comes to preventing crime?
A: As you know, the police cannot be everywhere all the time, and, of course, the bad guys know when the police are not around. Everyone has their own responsibility to make their home and themselves safer. Our leading crime in the city is larceny from vehicles. One of our biggest campaigns is the Clean Car Campaign, educating the public to keep everything in your vehicles out of sight. The biggest responsibility that everyone has is to be aware of their surroundings. We have people walking around oblivious, on cell phones talking or texting. They have no idea that perpetrators are looking for that vulnerable victim. You have to be vigilant.