Fighting crime in our suburb – the app way
In response to a spike in crime in Emmarentia, ERA held a public security meeting on April 25 2018. In preparation for this meeting, ERA’s security portfolio holder, Geraldine Connell, held several meetings with the developers of the Bull Horns app as well as Emmarentia resident, Kingsley Brown and CAP.
At the meeting it was announced that negotiations with CAP were in progress with a view to their participation in a free one-month trial of the app. However, efforts to get this operational have been delayed.
At the request of residents, ERA and CAP are running a comprehensive analysis across multiple products and will then report back to residents.
Once whichever app is chosen and is operational, it is envisaged that residents of Emmarentia and Greenside will use it to report suspicious activity in public spaces to CAP.
During the trial period, residents can try out the Bull Horns app. When the panic button on your smartphone is pressed, it automatically summonses the nearest vehicle of your security company and it disseminates crime alerts in a structured manner.
Why CAP and not another security company?
ERA’s relationship with CAP goes back to 2013 when the chairpersons of ERA and the Greenside Residents Association conducted a due diligence of several security companies and decided that CAP offered the BEST MODEL for securing the suburb.
CAP’s model of doing business
- allows residents from each area that they service, to sit on an oversight committee and influence how the service can be improved
- ring-fences the income earned from each area and spends any surpluses on additional security for that area (e.g. the addition of an extra patrol vehicle following an increase in CAP membership over the past five years)
It is for these reasons that ERA endorses CAP. This endorsement is an approval of the business model and service levels of CAP. However, all residents have consumer rights which entitle them to choose their preferred security provider.
ERA is proactively engaging with CAP to try and bring innovative improvements for the safety of our residents.
ERA’s newly-formed security subcommittee (ERASS) suggests that residents download the Bull Horns app (tap on this link: http://onelink.to/g7tymz
Once the app is downloaded:
- Because no contract has yet been signed with any security vendor, do not select your security company from the drop-down menu in the field called “Emergency contacts”
- Instead, type in your personal security company’s emergency number in the second row
- Add the cell phone numbers of other people that are closest to you in the fields below
- Should you need to put out a call for help (e.g. if you are being followed home) or report a suspicious person (e.g. an abusive car guard), “PRESS THE PANIC BUTTON” on your phone. The app will send sms messages with your GPS co-ordinates to your friends and family. It will also immediately call your security company.
For more info on the app check out ERA’s website: http://era.org.za/fight-crime-in-our-suburb-load-the-bull-horns-app/