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Rural areas welcome Block Watch

Rural North Okanagan residents are coming together to fight crime.

The number of Block Watch programs in the five electoral areas has climbed to 18 with the creation of two new groups in Mara and Sanford Road in the BX.

“It’s a good way to get the community and neighbourhood together,” said Roy Morgan, crime prevention co-ordinator with the RCMP Community Policing Unit.

Block Watch encourages neighbours to get to know each other and to keep an eye out for suspicious activity.

“We’ve had good results with grow-ops,” said Morgan, who provides participants with information on criminal incidents in their area.

There are now 430 houses involved in Block Watch in the electoral areas and the goal is to bring more on board in 2013.

“We want to improve and extend the program,” said Morgan.

Besides Block Watch, the Community Policing Unit makes crime prevention presentations to community groups and schools, delivers training and co-ordinates Speed Watch.

Marking ski equipment has also been a focus at Silver Star to ensure stolen items can be returned to their owner, while information on how to prevent automobile break-ins has been posted at Sovereign Lake.

“There are people who are opportunists,” said Morgan of individuals looking for valuables left in vehicles.

For more information about the rural crime prevention program, call 250-550-7845 or e-mail rmorgan@vernon.ca.

 

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