February 26, 2024

Environmental approach to crime reduction offered to Marion County residents

The initiative aims to improve community security and quality of life using a variety of solutions, including changes to landscaping, lighting and beautification efforts in neighborhoods. - nichcollins/Creative Commons

The initiative aims to improve community security and quality of life using a variety of solutions, including changes to landscaping, lighting and beautification efforts in neighborhoods.

nichcollins/Creative Commons

A program that teaches groups how to create spaces that promote safety and reduce crime is open to Marion County residents. The presentations are being offered free to the public by the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office.

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, or CPTED, is an approach the county says groups and individuals can use to shape their spaces to reduce crime.

The initiative aims to improve community security and quality of life using a variety of solutions, including changes to landscaping, lighting and beautification efforts in neighborhoods.

Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears said the programming reaches out to community groups with training and recommendations.

“[To] have a conversation about what maybe they could do differently, or better,” Mears said, “And it really just builds that level of trust of ‘Hey we're all trying to work together to make sure that we're protecting ourselves,’ but also having communication about what's going on.”

CPTED Certified Practitioner Lissania Perez Diaz said anyone is free to learn about the program.

“We get training for schools, community organizations, complexes, universities, all these fields, so we can make sure that we're hitting every single spot in the community,” Diaz said.

The presentations are offered in English or Spanish.

Mears said many of the neighborhood techniques can be accomplished quickly and affordably.

“Do we have trees in the appropriate places? Do they provide privacy, but at the same time, also shield someone? [Are you] going to put a fence in when it makes no sense for that fence to be there? Do you have windows exposed?” Mears said. 

Groups can contact the prosecutor's office to schedule a presentation.

 

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