Jun 23, 2003
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. - Since its inception in 2000, the City of Mississauga's Facility Watch program hotline has logged almost 200 calls from residents reporting incidents of destruction of property, graffiti, inappropriate behaviour, litter, noise and suspicious activity.
"Facility Watch is a community-based program that requires the participation of all customers, residents and staff to be successful," said Facility Manager Jim Wynne. "Each year, we see an increase of participation in the program, which is exactly what we want."
The majority of calls received were from residents who use the parks. Incidents that were reported in facilities were handled by City staff. The Facility Watch program helped direct the City in its development and implementation of a Violence and Vandalism policy in 2000, making facilities even safer.
The Facility Watch program offers four options for reporting incidents:
1. the City of Mississauga's general 24 hour hotline number, 905-615-4060, to report graffiti, vandalism and litter;
2. Peel Regional Police, 905-453-3311, to report activities such as alcohol consumption; property destruction and suspicious behaviour;
3. Emergency 911; and
4. in-person at City facilities to report inappropriate activities to a City staff person.
"Future plans for the Facility Watch program include expanding the outdoor signage in additional parks throughout the City and working in partnership with the Violence and Vandalism policy to further reduce incidents in our facilities," said Wynne.
Future success of the program relies heavily on the participation of residents, facility and park users. Participation in the Facility Watch program is easily done by:
? cleaning up after your group activities, such as picnics and sporting tournaments in City parks;
? remembering to respect private property, materials and equipment when using services or participating in programs at City facilities and parks;
? reporting items such as graffiti, broken glass or burnt out lights in any City facility or park;
? reporting acts of vandalism such as damaged park benches or a change room that has been marked up with a hockey puck;
? report suspicious behaviour such as a person peeking into parked cars; and
? reporting activities such as consuming alcohol in a park.
The Facility Watch program is a critical aspect of crime prevention in our facilities and parks. Through partnerships with Peel Regional Police, Mississauga Crime Prevention Association and the local community, this pro-active program enhances the quality of life for all Mississauga residents.
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