Today, the Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, launched the new Neighbourhood Watch brand in George, whilst participating in a panel discussion on the importance of Neighbourhood Watches.
The brand launch forms part of the Department’s efforts to professionalise Neighbourhood Watches so as to increase community participation, create safer neighbourhoods, and increase perceptions of safety within communities.
The professionalisation of Neighbourhood Watches started in 2013 through the Western Cape Community Safety Act (WCCSA). Section 6 of the Act, which deals with the Accreditation and Support of Neighbourhood Watches gives recognition to the efforts of Neighbourhood Watches and acknowledges the value of their presence in communities.
Minister Fritz said, “Over the past few years the Neighbourhood Watch project has evolved rapidly. On 1 October 2016, the Act was promulgated, allowing the Department to formally begin accrediting Neighbourhood Watches in the Western Cape. In 2017, training for Neighbourhood Watches was reviewed and a new training manual was developed. In 2018, funding for Accredited Neighbourhood Watches was approved and implemented. This brings us to 2019 where we are launching the new Neighbourhood Watch Brand. The new brand was previously launched at the River Club in Observatory on 28 March and included all local structures.”
Minister Fritz further added, “The introduction of our new brand shows our commitment to changing the old positioning and stigmas of the Neighbourhood Watch. The launch aims to create safer neighbourhoods and increase perceptions of safety in communities.”
Under the leadership of Minister Albert Fritz, the Department of Community Safety will continue to use every tool at its disposal to safeguard the Western Cape.