MID appoints security provider

2015-07-07 06:01
Henry Nel, David Sylvester and Thanduxolo Nomnganga show off the Muizenberg Improvement District’s latest crime fighting tool.

nicole mccain

Henry Nel, David Sylvester and Thanduxolo Nomnganga show off the Muizenberg Improvement District’s latest crime fighting tool. PHOTO: nicole mccain

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Muizenberg will have a dedicated patrol vehicle patrolling the streets in the improvement district from next month.

This as the Muizenberg Improvement District (MID) appoints a new public safety and security provider from next month.

Securitas, who has been awarded the contract, will also provide a controller based at the MID office and additional backup outside the Muizenberg area, says MID chairperson Tony Smith.

“Given the constraints of the MID budget, this was the most cost-effective solution,” Smith says.

“The board had sought expert opinion and carefully analysed the impact of the MID public safety and security measures on the community”

For residents and visitors, the factor that is probably the foundation of all other benefits delivered by the MID is the feeling of being safe, Smith believes, and improving safety is therefore one of the first priorities of an improvement district.

“Managing the safety of public spaces is distinctly different from providing security services to individual homes. Public space cannot be ‘guarded’ – this would take a guard on every corner all the time, while even 24-hour walking patrols give only an illusion of safety,” he says.

The main advantages of the Securitas appointment are that the company has substantial experience in providing public safety services within improvement districts, they have effective liaison with all law enforcement agencies and a sound understanding of how to apply city bylaws in the management of crime, Smith says.

In the past, there has been some confusion over where the MID public safety service ends and where personal responsibility for safety and security starts, Smith says.

He reminds residents that an improvement districts’ mandate is only for the public spaces within its area, not for the safety and security of private properties.

“Nevertheless, the safer public spaces are, the safer the private properties in the area are likely to be. While the public may report incidents of harassment and crime in public spaces to the control room, it is important to note that the MID patrol vehicle will not respond to crime incidents at houses and businesses,” he says.

MID actively encourages neighbours to form WhatsApp groups so they can alert each other to suspicious activity in their streets.

MID is also helping drive membership of the local neighbourhood watch, known as the Muizenberg Community Safety Initiative (MCSI)

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