De­crease in home break-ins af­ter neigh­bour­hood watch is cre­ated

Bayview Post - - News -

“Twenty per cent would be a fair num­ber of peo­ple who are ap­pre­hended or ar­rested for a break and en­ter.” — Po­lice Con­sta­ble Ti­mothy Somers, Crime Pre­ven­tion Of­fi­cer with 53 Divi­sion

Last year, the Bayview and York Mills area com­mu­nity was plagued by home break-ins, many within the Chi­nese com­mu­nity. This year, Toronto Po­lice Ser­vice, 32 Divi­sion has seen a 13 per cent de­crease in break-ins.

In the spring of 2017, Xiong Deng cre­ated the Bayview York Mills Chi­nese Com­mu­nity neigh­bour­hood watch through WeChat, an app sim­i­lar to What­sapp, and it now has about 600 mem­bers. “We worry about [break-ins] be­cause in the Chi­nese com­mu­nity, there’s a lot of peo­ple go­ing back and forth be­tween Canada and China, so of­ten there will be kids and women stay­ing at home,” said Deng.

Deng said he used a func­tion on WeChat where he was able to add his neigh­bours, and any new mem­bers must pro­vide their name, ad­dress and phone num­ber to the per­son manag­ing the group.

“If I see any sus­pi­cious car or per­son walk­ing around, knock­ing on doors, I would just post it with some pic­tures and word­ing telling them to just be care­ful,” he said.

Since the cre­ation of the neigh­bour­hood watch, Deng said there has been a no­tice­able de­crease in break-ins in the area. The com­mu­nity has also be­gun work­ing with po­lice.

“With the help of Jaye Robinson [the lo­cal city coun­cil­lor], we ar­ranged meet­ings with the divi­sion and chat about the is­sues and the things we need to do to pre­vent crime,” said Deng.

The neigh­bours also work to­gether to col­lect mail or cut the grass for any­one who is away, to pre­vent that house from be­com­ing a tar­get.

Mem­bers of the Bayview York Mills Chi­nese Com­mu­nity neigh­bour­hood watch

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