The City of Langley Mission Statement is “To build a vibrant, healthy and safe community” and one of the Key Focus Areas in the 2013 – 2017 Strategic Plan is to ensure that our citizens feel safe and that their property is secure. The citizens of the City of Langley, as most Canadians, consider being able to live in a safe and secure community as one of the most important aspects of their lives.
The City of Langley experiences the problems of crime firsthand but we do not have all the tools or resources needed to address them. Therefore, the success of an intervention to prevent and reduce crime must be built on collaborative and problem-solving relationships through community mobilization. The long-term success and sustainability of action plans are linked to the degree of community involvement and ownership of strategies.
To this end, City Council created a Community Crime Prevention Task Force (the “Task Force”) comprised of a cross-section of community members and business groups as well as law enforcement agencies. The goal of the task force is to develop action plans and to prioritize actions to prevent and reduce crime in those groups/neighbourhoods in the community with the most significant levels of fear, whether real or perceived.
A number of approaches were used to gather and analyze the information for this report.
• Refer to BC’s Community Crime Prevention Guide as a guide to our strategic planning process;
• Refer to BC’s Report of the Blue Ribbon Panel on Crime Reduction as a foundational document to develop potential crime prevention and crime reduction strategies;
• A walking tour of hot spots in the community with the Task Force to gain firsthand experience of the issues and challenges;
• Ongoing communication and meeting with the Task Force to clarify expectations and discuss emerging findings and strategic directions;
• Review of background information related to the Task Force: crime trends, community issues, crime prevention, and similar organized groups working on crime prevention;
• Conduct literature review and research on crime prevention and crime reduction initiatives implemented in other communities in Canada, USA, UK, Australia, and New Zealand; and,
• Engagement sessions to have Task Force members answer the following questions:
o What does a quality community look like?
o Which of these characteristics does Langley City have a lot of?
o What does Langley City need to improve on?
o And how do we do this?