Give your child a safety password

2016-06-28 06:00
Social crime prevention specialist Constable Carol Isaacs speaks to the sector 1 community imbizo on Thursday evening.  PHOTO: Chevon booysen

Social crime prevention specialist Constable Carol Isaacs speaks to the sector 1 community imbizo on Thursday evening. PHOTO: Chevon booysen

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Four children have been gunned down in Parkwood in the past month.

This is according to Grassy Park police Sector 1 Commander for Parkwood and Fairways areas, Sergeant Heinrich Gordon, who spoke at a community imbizo in a packed Parkwood Civic Centre on Thursday evening 23 June.

“I spoke to a woman last week who was traumatised by losing a family member. The shooter is still walking outside and there is something really wrong with this picture.”

He urges residents in Parkwood and Fairways to work together and support police in their bid against crime. “We know there are people who know where the criminals are and where the drugs are and where the guns are. We are asking these people to please come forward and approach the police to give us information so we can eradicate crime in our area,” Gordon says. “Why should our community live in fear and be afraid of the merchants? We need people who are willing to work with us and support us in the area because the police cannot do this on their own. It’s about time that our communities say enough is enough.”

He adds another concern cropped up while informing people of the imbizo.

“While I was driving around and informing people of the upcoming imbizo, people asked me: ‘What about our safety if we decide to come to the imbizo?’. This was very concerning to me and it should not be this way. If you do not feel comfortable talking about certain illegal activities happening in the area, I urge you to come and speak to me instead.”

He also encourages residents to start avenue chats on WhatsApp as this has brought change in the Fairways community.

Residents were also given an introduction to the #GangsterismShallFall campaign which has been rolled out to schools in the Grassy Park precinct.

Riana Ohlson explained to residents that schools are being targeted through a pamphlet and information brochure drive with tips for youth to keep them away form illegal and gang activities.

Parents were also introduced to Grassy Park social crime specialist Constable Carol Strauss who did an introduction of what the police are doing at schools and with youth in the area. “We have been going around to schools to give them safety tips, and one of the main tips for parents is to establish a password with your child. If for some reason your child is approached by a stranger saying that the parent sent them to fetch them from school or the parent has allowed them to gain access to their home, they should have a password that is only shared between the parent and the child and should be kept a secret at all time. If your child asks that person for the password and they do not have it, the child will know it is not safe to talk to the stranger,” explains Strauss.

She encourages parents to remain vigilant of their children during the school holidays.

V To report crime for Sector 1, contact Sergeant Heinrich Gordon on 082 522 2881.

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