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Assuring Mukilteo voice heard

Feeling safe through community partnership l Mayor's Message


\When it comes to delivering services efficiently and well, there is nothing more important than the public safety services we provide. We are fortunate to have career professionals in our fire and police departments who keep us safe.

However, law enforcement extends far beyond arrests, traffic citations, and criminal investigations. One of the most effective aspects of public safety is within our community outreach and crime prevention efforts. Strong community-police relationships create a trust that is essential in effective policing.

We also have a strong focus on prevention. Because identity theft victimization is a concern, the police department will host a “shred event” on May 4 to provide a safe and secure opportunity for residents to discard documents that contain personal information. These types of documents are sought after in trash cans by would be identity thieves and shredding is an effective way to keep personal information from being discovered. Residents who attend will be provided information on how to help prevent becoming a victim of identity theft.

Perhaps you’ve been able to attend our regular Coffee with a Cop event – community members got to share coffee and donuts with our police chief and other officers to talk informally about concerns and share ideas. Or, maybe you’ve been among the participants at our annual Citizen’s Academy, which allows community members to engage directly with our first responders and receive a snapshot of what they do to keep us safe. Through practical applications they experience and learn skills that showcase public safety work which increase the community’s confidence in the work they do. This year is our 15th year for the academy! In 2017, we expanded the program to add a Youth Academy aimed at building relationships with younger members of the community. Positive public safety interactions with our youth prevent misperceptions about relationships between our kids and our police officers, who are there to keep them safe. Watch for enrollment in the next month for the summer Youth Academy, and in the fall for the Citizen’s Academy.

I am proud that we are also able to partner with the School District to have a School Resource Officer, the excellent Officer Dodds, to be present in our schools, particularly at Kamiak. She is able to build relationships with our kids, serve as a role model, and provide crime prevention support.

Traffic safety – in school zones and in our neighborhoods – is a frequent concern. From Endeavor Elementary School, to Pointe Elliot neighborhoods, to Old Town – residents frequently reach out with concerns about speeding. One way to increase safety is to commit to increased enforcement.

We have recently appointed a motor officer who is primarily dedicated to the response of traffic complaints and collisions. The officer’s duties also include monitoring vehicular traffic and enforcing traffic violations. Those who travel on our roadways should feel safe and protected. A dedicated motor officer can address traffic issues more efficiently which enhances the quality of police service to our residents. This is a great addition to the police department.

I believe we should be funding improved school safety, better response times to 911 calls, modernizing our fire stations, crime prevention, but also support for crime victims, as well as responding to the opioid crisis. This year, our staff will be discussing options for this with the City Council.

We also have a few other less well-known programs that can help individual homeowners and businesses. Our Crime Prevention Division can provide a Vacation House Watch while residents are away from their homes for any period of time. Police volunteers regularly check on these residences to ensure that there are no signs of intrusion. Our Crime Prevention Officer Travis is also available to conduct a security survey of homes or businesses in Mukilteo. This can reveal vulnerabilities and suggestions will be made to make homes a less attractive target for burglary. Contact to participate.

We also manage an active Neighborhood Block Watch Program. Neighborhood residents work together to keep their community safe by looking out for other families and property and alerting Mukilteo Police of suspicious activities and crimes in progress. This program builds community cohesiveness, encourage personal responsibility for their safety, and can reduce crime. We have added two block watch organizations this year and currently have approximately 74 block watch organizations.

Public safety is more than police responding to calls for service. Public safety can be seen in forms of community partnerships, education, prevention, and deterrence efforts.

Public safety is one of the most important oversight responsibilities I have as mayor of the city of Mukilteo. It is pivotal that our residents not only feel welcome here but safe as well. I’m thankful for the leadership and hard work the men and women of the police department do every day to accomplish that goal.


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