Hillcrest Vagrancy Task Force

by on July 23, 2012

July 24, 2012
TO: HBA Business Owners
FROM: Hillcrest Vagrancy Task Force
RE: Reducing Vagrancy in Hillcrest

Recently concerned residents and business owners in Hillcrest got together to work on reducing the vagrancy population in Hillcrest. After considerable self education about the issue (including meetings with Todd Gloria, the police, a downtown group with a similar goal and touring a shelter), a new group, called the Hillcrest Vagrancy Task Force (HVT), was formed. Our current members are Anne Haule, Tim Gahagan, Ali Rheem and Sean Cute.

The goal of HVT is to reduce the vagrancy population in Hillcrest through a number of practical actions. The first strategy is to identify “hot spots” (locations where vagrants gather). At its most recent meeting, the Hillcrest Town Council provided a list of a number of hot spots.

We now ask Hillcrest businesses to do the same. Please take a few minutes to send us a reply listing hot spots in Hillcrest of which you are aware.

Once we have a comprehensive list of hot spots, we will communicate with those property owners (be they residents, businesses or churches) and ask for their cooperation. Specifically we will ask them to sign a Letter of Agency that allows the police to remove vagrants from their property. We will also request that they regularly contact the police to remove vagrants and that they consider instituting environmental designs on their property to reduce crime. Depending on the severity of the problem, we may also request that owners ban together to hire security guards to maintain the property free form vagrants. Additionally, we may contact the corporate offices of those national companies with locations here in Hillcrest to alert them to the problem and solicit their support.

For your information, we have attached a description of the Letter of Agency as well as examples of environmental design to deter crime. If you haven’t already done so, please sign the Letter of Agency and forward it to the police. Also, please review the design ideas and implement those that make sense for your situation. Lastly, let us know if you want to help out and if you have other ideas.

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