July 08, 2013

News Release

For Immediate Release

National Night Out promotes safe, healthy neighborhoods

Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams is hoping to send a message to criminals: neighborhoods are organized and fighting back. This year marks the second anniversary of a citywide National Night Out event to coincide with the national public safety event Aug. 6.

This free event is a result of collaboration between Community Partnership of the Ozarks, Springfield-Greene County Park Board and the City of Springfield and will bring together law enforcement, as well as agencies and organizations that promote health and safety.

The event doesn’t replace the annual neighborhood-based events, billed as Neighborhood Night Out. Individual neighborhoods and homeowners associations are encouraged to hold their own events following National Night Out to allow residents to get to know their neighbors.

National Night Out celebrates the culmination of crime prevention activity in all Springfield neighborhoods: people working together in associations and other groups to prevent and address crime and other neighborhood problems. It also promotes healthy neighborhoods and encourages people to get out and get to know one another.

“It is an occasion to celebrate past successes, discuss current challenges or issues, and re-dedicate to collaborative efforts with neighbors, police, businesses and others to improve the quality of life in our city,” said Chief Williams.

Last year's National Night Out campaign involved citizens, law enforcement agencies, civic groups, businesses, neighborhood organizations and local officials from over 15,000 communities from all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities and military bases worldwide.

The Springfield Police Department uses a variety of crime prevention strategies to increase ways that citizens can protect themselves, and their property.

Community Policing is a collaborative effort between the police department and the community they serve that identifies problems of crime and disorder, and involves all elements of the community, in the search for solutions to these problems. It is founded on close, mutually beneficial ties between police and community members.

Police Area Representative (PAR) officers use problem-oriented policing to produce long-term solutions to the problems of crime or decay in communities. Police, residents, and other agencies or organizations, work together to identify and find the causes for neighborhood crime problems, then develop responses to those problems. In most cases, the responses developed through problem-oriented policing are joint police-community actions, which also involve participation by a variety of other departments within the City of Springfield. By doing this, the PAR Officers are able to resolve long-standing neighborhood issues, thereby avoiding an escalation of those specific incidents. Citizens can locate their PAR officers at the City’s website.

Crime Prevention Officers coordinate and help organize neighborhood watch and business watch groups and perform commercial and residential security surveys using established Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) principles. Crime Prevention Officers can also present programs on varied topics including robbery prevention, drugs, residential security, commercial vandalisms and burglaries and personal safety. Crime prevention tips are also available on this website. If you're interested in starting a neighborhood watch group, would like to learn more about the business watch program or need other information from the Crime Prevention Officers, contact them at 417-874-2113 / 417-874-2188.

Neighborhood Watch is a voluntary program organized by concerned citizens to reduce crime in their communities. Working with local law enforcement agencies, citizens can learn when and how to report suspicious activities, assist in property identification, conduct home security surveys, and implement home security measures and precautions. Springfield recently updated its neighborhood watch program and offers training for those interested in participating. Springfield Police Department Neighborhood Watch Brochure (pdf)

Community Partnership of the Ozarks is a nonprofit agency that aims to facilitate and promote the building of resilient children, healthy families and strong neighborhoods and communities through collaboration, programming and resource development. CPO has a variety of programs aimed at helping neighbors. For more information, please visit www.commpartnership.org.

The City of Springfield Neighborhoods and Planning Office also provides services and support to sustain and revitalize Springfield Neighborhoods. This past year, the department launched Great Neighborhoods, an initiative to improve quality of life and recognize neighbors who are making a difference.

Additional Resources for Neighbors:

springfield police department

Springfield Police Department

Headquarters: 321 E. Chestnut Expy., Springfield, MO 65802
South District Station: 2620 W. Battlefield Rd., Springfield, MO 65807
417-864-1810 • springfieldmo.gov/spd