One of the things we (Law Enforcement) have not gotten our arms completely around is “Crime Prevention,” and how it is accomplished. Crime prevention is hard to measure, and even more difficult to have an effective impact on. It is hard to measure what doesn’t happen and why? It is not an exact science and lots of variables come into play. There are many quick to take credit for positive results. One thing that does have an impact and that is holding people accountable. Law Enforcement doing good police work does prevent others from becoming a victim downstream. The other thing is, as a community, working (mentor) with young people to help prevent them from makimg bad choices/decisions that lead to a life of criminal behavior.
In my career I have seen this work in both directions. I have seen families that embrace the life of crime, and each generation seemed to follow in their father, brother or uncle’s footsteps. I have also seen siblings, with the right mentor, break from the generational life of crime to lead outstanding lives. Mentoring was the difference-the game changer.
Mentoring…the process of teaching, advising, or giving help to someone (usually younger or less experienced) is something that all of us can do. Anyone can be a mentor. There are hundreds of young people in our community that need a mentor. They need someone that will give them their time and help them as they make changes/decisions on the road to adulthood.
There are lots of opportunities out there in the greater Medford community to mentor someone. Places like Kids Unlimited, Hearts With a Mission, The Family Nuturing Center and many others offer you a place to mentor. There is a place for you to have a positive impact on a young person’s life. It will have an impact on them (and you) as well as our entire community. We will all benefit.
Crime prevention begins with all of us. We have to concentrate on those we can have the most influence on (the young) and help mentor them along the way to becoming quality adult citizens of our community. That is my wish for 2015-that we all mentor…and more often. The results will last more than a lifetime. I suspect the results will also have an impact on crime in our community. We can all tke credit for that.
Chief of Police