The Pine Bluff Police Department has implemented a Business Watch Program, which is modeled after the Neighborhood Watch program.
The effort takes the "neighbors looking out for neighbors" concept to the commercial level, according to a news release.
"We're excited about the Business Watch Program," said Pine Bluff Police Chief Lloyd Franklin Sr. "This program is a partnership between the Pine Bluff Police Department and local business owners to increase the security of businesses and reduce crime in the community. It's something we have been wanting to do for a while now."
Franklin said the program is created to promote a safe environment for people to work, shop, and live in Pine Bluff.
"It is designed to protect you, your business and your employees," he said. "This is accomplished by businesses and law enforcement working together to reduce crime in the workplace."
According to the National Sheriffs' Association, Business Watch Programs actively reduce and prevent crime through cooperation and education. The program enables businesses to take an active part in preventing and reducing crime through sharing information, raising awareness, and improving communications through meetings and other methods.
Benefits of participating in the Business Watch Program include:
Promoting communication and understanding between law enforcement and the business community.
Encouraging cooperation between neighboring businesses and business owners.
Teaching businesses to crime-proof their own properties and to watch over neighboring businesses and report any suspicious activity to authorities.
Developing an open line of communication for quick dissemination of information regarding criminal activity in the area.
Business owners interested in joining the PBPD Business Watch Program should contact Alicia Dorn, community engagement coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Chief Lloyd Franklin Sr. at email@example.com.