Social & Economic Factors Education Employment Income Family & Social Support Community Safety Search Policies & Programs

hints
Display All Policies & Programs

Neighborhood watch

Health Factors: Community Safety
Decision Makers: Community Development Professionals Community Members Local Government State Government Federal Government Nonprofit Leaders
Evidence Rating: Scientifically Supported
Population Reach: 50-99% of WI's population
Impact on Disparities: No impact on disparities likely

Is this program or policy in use in your community? Tell us about it.

Description

Residents who participate in neighborhood watches report suspicious or potentially criminal behavior to local law enforcement. Residents work together to help law enforcement solve problems, and are typically led by a block organizer who serves as the liaison with local police (NNW). Some neighborhood watches conduct security surveys and encourage residents to mark their property with personal identifiers (Campbell-Bennett 2008).

Expected Beneficial Outcomes

Reduced crime
Reduced vandalism

Evidence of Effectiveness

There is strong evidence that neighborhood watches reduce crime; watches have been shown to reduce crime between 16 and 26% (Campbell-Bennett 2008). Neighborhood watch programs are also a suggested strategy to prevent vandalism (Scott 2007). Additional study is needed to confirm which neighborhood watch practices most effectively reduce crime (Campbell-Bennett 2008).

A study of neighborhood watch signs suggests that effects of these signs on individuals’ fear of burglary may vary by neighborhoods’ socio-economic condition. Signs appear to increase concerns of burglary in low income neighborhoods, especially when the sign is aged or defaced, but appear to have less effect on concerns about burglary in high income neighborhoods (Schultz 2009).

Implementation

United States

The National Neighborhood Watch and many local law enforcement agencies provide neighborhood watch volunteers with training and materials (NNW).

Wisconsin

Wisconsin has many registered neighborhood watches (NNW).

Implementation Resources

BJA-Program manual - Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). Neighborhood watch manual. Accessed on February 12, 2017
BJA-Resources for Native American - Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). Watch out, help out your community: Neighborhood watch resources for Native American communities. Accessed on February 12, 2017
NNW - National Neighborhood Watch (NNW). A Division of the National Sheriffs’ Association. Accessed on February 12, 2017

Citations - Description

Campbell-Bennett 2008 - Bennett T, Holloway K, Farrington D. The effectiveness of neighborhood watch. Campbell Systematic Reviews. 2008:18. Accessed on February 12, 2017
NNW - National Neighborhood Watch (NNW). A Division of the National Sheriffs’ Association. Accessed on February 12, 2017

Citations - Evidence

Campbell-Bennett 2008 - Bennett T, Holloway K, Farrington D. The effectiveness of neighborhood watch. Campbell Systematic Reviews. 2008:18. Accessed on February 12, 2017
Schultz 2009* - Schultz PW, Tabanico JJ. Criminal beware: A social norms perspective on posting public warning signs. Criminology. 2009;47(4):1201-22. Accessed on February 12, 2017
Scott 2007 - Scott ML, La Vigne NG, Palmer T. Preventing Vandalism. Washington DC: The Urban Institute Justice Policy Center; 2007. Accessed on February 12, 2017

Citations - Implementation

NNW - National Neighborhood Watch (NNW). A Division of the National Sheriffs’ Association. Accessed on February 12, 2017

Page Last Updated

February 13, 2017

* Journal subscription may be required for access.