Personal Safety is on peoples’ minds right now as there have been a number of attempted car-jackings in Kingfield, along with other criminal activity. KFNA is encouraging community members to review common safety strategies such as these below. These are ways a few of the ways we all can reduce opportunities for crime and protect ourselves, our neighbors, and our belongings.
Remember the best way to protect yourself, and others, is to always be aware of your surroundings and to listen to your gut when something feels “off”. Also as a reminder that although many of us are on edge and frightened, sometimes in our efforts to protect ourselves and those we know and love we also end up causing harm to others. More often than not, that harm falls on people of color, many of whom are our neighbors. One of the best ways to protect ourselves, and our entire community, is to get to know one another by name, knowing each other’s comings and goings, kids, roommates, and cars. This way we can watch out for each other, as opposed to watching in fear to protect ourselves. Please take this as a reminder that as our nerves are jangled, we need to be even more careful about checking the implicit biases we all carry and be bold about being active in our community and claiming it as a safe and welcoming space.
If you block is interested in gathering to discuss recent concerns, safety tips, or just want to get to know each other, please know that KFNA Staff is willing to attend your Block Club Meeting just contact .
PERSONAL SAFETY TIPS:
- Keep the doors to your car locked when you’re inside to prevent someone from opening your door.
- Be aware of your surroundings, look at who and what is around you and take note of anyone approaching you or your car. A person “heads down” looking at their phone is much easier to take by surprise.
- Be aware of what’s happening to others around you and call 911 if you see signs that someone is being threatened or assaulted. Try to pass along any license plate information as well as vehicle and suspect descriptions.
- Never leave your car running while unattended and never leave a key inside a parked vehicle.
- Keep some distance between yourself and a stranger who approaches you, ideally an arm’s length or more.
- Be alert if someone approaches you to ask a question like what time it is or if you have a light (cigarette).
- Don’t carry your cell phone in your hand. Keep it out of sight in an inside pocket or zipped in a bag.
- Don’t give your cell phone to anyone who approaches asking if they can use it to make a call.
- If you carry a purse, consider a cross body bag, fanny pack or travel-style money belt. Don’t hang a purse on the back of a chair in restaurants, bars or coffee shops but keep it in your lap or between your feet beneath the table – out of reach of passers-by.
- Don’t carry more documents, credit cards or valuables with you than what you need. The loss of a social security card, birth certificate or passport can create more identity theft complications later.
- Take a self-defense class. That can increase your confidence and decrease fear.
- Consider the usefulness of self-defense tools carefully before purchasing. In order to be effective, the tool must be at hand at the moment needed (not in a bag, under the car seat or in the glove compartment) and you have to know how to use it properly. Seek reputable advice and be prepared to practice.