Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis officially launched the National Neighbourhood Watch Council Monday night at Police Headquarters – an initiative aimed at bridging the gap between police and communities.
With serious crime figures trending down for the first quarter of the year, Dr. Minnis said he anticipates that the council will do even more to put a dent in crime.
Community leaders, from various neighbourhoods in New Providence, will be trained at the Police Training College on Thompson Boulevard in crime prevention strategies.
Dr. Minnis, however, warned participants that they play a separate role in the crime fight.
“You are not expected to engage suspects,” Dr. Minnis said.
“Your job is [to] observe and report in a timely fashion. Your safety and security is important as the police will need the information from you.”
The prime minister added that the council is a part of a comprehensive plan to reduce crime and the fulfilment of a promise made to the Bahamian people.
“In order for nations to be safe, we must be active citizens and residents much get involved.”
Each neighbourhood crime watch, he said, will have support from the various police stations in their communities. Specific officers have also been identified to work with each watch group.
Kevia Major, president of the East Park Home Owners Association and Barbara Beneby-Hepburn, president of the Grove West Home Owners Association, have been appointed as co-chairs of the new council.