Crime Prevention

Vernon Crime Prevention is responsible for Operational Programs dealing with the Prevention of Crime and creation of a safer Community. We engage community members to be part of the solution to crime in their neighbourhood and City.

The Crime Prevention Coordinator is responsible for the continuation, development, promotion and implementation of community-based Crime Prevention/Community Safety Operational Programs within the Vernon RCMP Detachment area.  They are responsible for Programs that work with communities to create productive and measurable processes effectively increasing safety and reducing the fear and incidents of crime in the communities we serve.

Crime Prevention Office Programs
Block Watch Crime Prevention Group

Block Watch is a free RCMP endorsed community program operated by the City of Vernon Community Safety Unit. Vernon currently has 88 active Block Watch programs.

The Community Safety Unit does implement, co-ordinate and monitor the Block Watch Program in the City of Vernon. Residents create a Crime Prevention Group and assist the Coordinator by organizing the initial boundaries of the Group and set up the Block Watch training for their Group while maintaining the Block Watch Program in their neighbourhoods.

Contact the Community Safety Coordinator - Crime Prevention for more information on how to get involved. 

Active Block Watches by Area

Check out the new interactive map of current active block watches.

                                     

Aims and objectives

  • To reduce residential crime through the active participation of a majority of community residents.
  • To improve police/public relations by “working together”.
  • To establish a sense of community within neighbourhoods.
  • To make our communities a better place to live, work, and raise our children.

Benefits of the Block Watch Program

The active involvement and participation of citizens in a Block Watch program will:

  • Increase personal safety.
  • Increase crime awareness and the reporting of suspicious activities.
  • Increase cohesiveness and community spirit.
  • Increase the safety and protection of personal property by increasing knowledge of security measures.
  • Reduce crime rates.
  • Reduce fear of crime.
  • Discount offered on home insurance premium through some carriers.

For more information check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Certified Crime Free Multi-Housing Program

The Crime Free Multi-Housing Program was introduced into British Columbia in 1994 by the New Westminster Police Department. Over twenty communities across British Columbia have adopted the Crime Free Multi-Housing Program. The program has successfully improved security and reduced crime, by working to identify the problems and provide solutions. It takes a pro-active approach at reducing criminal and nuisance-related activities in the community.

The City of Vernon Crime Free Multi-Housing Program is a three-phase, direct and solution oriented crime prevention initiative designed specifically to help apartment owners, managers, residents, police and other significant agencies work together to help keep illegal and nuisance activity off rental property. The result of this team effort is a safer, more habitable environment in which to live.

Following the completion of all three phases, the owners/management will earn the privilege of posting signs on the property stating they have joined the local Crime Free Multi-Housing Program and the use of the CFMH Program logo for marketing purposes.

Learn more about the program with the Program Overview

                                                              

Crime Free Multi-Housing Buildings:

Members of the Certified Crime Free Multi-Housing Program work in partnership with the Vernon Community Safety Unit to reduce criminal and nuisance activity on their properties. However, there is no guarantee that crime will not occur at any member property and any references to individuals and property management companies should not be considered an endorsement by the Vernon RCMP or Community Safety Unit.

A “Crime Free Building” is one that has met the minimum standards specified in this program. The aim of the program is to reduce the opportunity and motivation for committing a crime or damage to the property. The program enables a community to become strong and act as one to make their home safe and free from tenants who bring crime into the building.

The following are Certified Crime Free Buildings in Vernon:

Kickwillie Place, 4305 19 Avenue, Vernon, BC
Phone: 250-542-2834
Management Company: Vernon Native Housing Society
Type of Housing: Provincial Affordable Housing

The Village, 1507 35 Avenue, Vernon, BC
Phone: 250-558-9656
Management Company: Gareb Holding Ltd.
Type of Housing: Affordable Senior Housing - 55+ Suites

Creekside Village, 3502 27 Avenue, Vernon, BC
Phone: 250-545-6475
Management Company: Vernon & District Community Land Trust Society
Type of Housing: Non-Profit Apartments

Kikanee Estates, 5701 Heritage Drive, Vernon, BC
Phone: 250-542-2834
Management Company: Vernon Native Housing Society
Type of Housing: Provincial Affordable Housing

Tanner Terrace, 3304 Alexis Park Drive, Vernon, BC
Phone: 250-542-2834
Management Company: Vernon Native Housing Society
Type of Housing: Provincial Affordable Housing

Thunderbird Manor, 5545 27 Avenue, Vernon, BC
Phone: 250-309-9283
Management Company: Vernon Native Housing Society
Type of Housing: Provincial Affordable Housing      

RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteer Program

RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers work with the City of Vernon and North Okanagan Detachment of the RCMP under the direction and supervision of the Crime Prevention Coordinator and RCMP. The involvement of volunteers is a crucial way in which the RCMP engages the community to deliver a more effective policing service.

Speed Watch
The Speed Watch Program operates in support of ICBC and their Road Safety initiative. The program is directly coordinated by the Community Safety Unit - Crime Prevention and is operated by RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers throughout the Vernon Detachment area.

The purpose of the program is to enhance the safety of our communities. This is done by increasing the level of awareness surrounding the issues of unsafe speed and dangerous driving and reducing the incidents of speeding by reflecting drivers' speed and reinforcing the speed limit in that zone. Trained volunteers use digital speed reader boards and a radar unit and concentrate on areas where speeding is a major hazard. There will be occasions when our Speed Watch operatives work with the Vernon’s RCMP Municipal Traffic section. These two-strike operations may land you a ticket should you choose to ignore the Speed Watch operation.

Lock Out Auto Crime
The Vernon RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers are responsible to carry out the RCMP/ICBC initiative Lock Out Auto Crime Program.

The RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers are out visibly checking vehicles in parking lots and completing a Crime Prevention Notice identifying key areas where drivers can improve the opportunity for a crime to take place.

This program is designed to raise awareness and reduce crime through education and the patrollers' presence in large parking areas throughout the City of Vernon.

Cell Watch
Cell Watch is an educational initiative aimed at reducing distracted driving incidents in communities throughout B.C. and it is conducted in partnership with police, RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers and ICBC’s Road Safety Department. The program is designed to remind drivers that it is illegal and dangerous to use hand-held cell phones and other portable electronic devices (PEDs) when driving. Cell Watch road-side operations are conducted by RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers.

Marine Vessel Safety / Invasive Mussel Check:
The RCMP Marine Unit will conduct voluntary vessel safety PRE-CHECK using RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers at Paddlewheel Park boat launch.

RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers will assist the Marine Unit in allowing boaters to complete a Pre-Launch inspection of all the items required under the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 along with its regulations governing pleasure craft.

This is strictly a voluntary check which will result in a document handed to the operator who will be able to produce this when stopped by the RCMP on the water. This is a preventative measure that not only assists the RCMP but gives the vessel operator the opportunity to correct any deficiencies prior to getting on the water.

RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers conducting Vessel Safety checks will also be checking vessels for Guagga and Zebra invasive mussels. Vernon RCMP Crime Prevention Volunteers will work in conjunction with OASISS, a non-profit organization that is dedicated to working collaboratively to prevent, monitor and control the spread of invasive species in the Okanagan-Similkameen region. We will be using a questionnaire that follows Ministry of Environment protocols. If a boat is determined to be high risk for invasive mussels (based on the answers to those questions) or if the RCMP Volunteers were to observe anything suspect, they will call the toll free reporting line (1-877-952-7277) or have the boaters call, ideally in their presence.

This is strictly a voluntary check which will help us be proactive in keeping our lakes and waterways protected.

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED)

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design or "CPTED" (pronounced sep-ted) is the science around the design and effective use of physical space to lead to a reduction in both the incidence and fear of crime.  CPTED seeks to reduce both opportunity and the number of targets for criminals.  Legitimate users of a space are actively encouraged, opportunities for observation are increased, and potential offenders are made to feel uncomfortable.

There are four basic strategies in "CPTED":

  1. access control
  2. ​surveillance
  3. territorial reinforcement
  4. maintenance

CPTED practitioners seek to "harden" or reduce the attractiveness of potential crime targets.  Aspects such as locks, windows, doors, fencing, cameras, lighting, and vegetation are just some of the tools in the CPTED toolkit.  The practice of CPTED ensures that all spaces are defined, properly designed, and have a designated use.  Altogether these strategies and tools seek to deflect and deter crime within and around properties and communities.