Community Safety Bill – One Week Left for Comment

Minister Dan Plato

Western Cape Minister of Community Safety

With one week left (until Tuesday 15 May 2012) for the public to comment on the Western Cape Government’s Community Safety Bill, I would like to urge everyone to make their inputs and play their part in making every community in this Province a safe place in which to live, work, learn, relax and move about.

This pioneering draft oversight legislation, a first of its kind, seeks to give effect to our Constitutional oversight responsibility, so that policing can be improved for the inhabitants of the Western Cape and in line with our strategic objective of increasing safety. Importantly, this Bill aims to improve safety in a pro-active way. The Bill seeks to improve the efficiency of the police and to enhance community safety in general through effective partnerships. The overall aim is to assist the police and our communities to fix the future.

The Bill is focussed on detecting patterns and practices of police conduct, identifying systemic problems and making recommendations on how best to improve policing in the Province. We believe that effective oversight can serve as a catalyst for improved policing and thereby make the province safer. In a constitutional democracy, it is essential that police act with due respect for the law and ensure that the rights of citizens are upheld and protected. It is equally important that the police service is accountable to the society it serves. Therefore we believe this Bill will help the police play this important role.

I have been involved in an extensive public participation process over the past weeks and have met with stakeholders from municipalities, CPFs, the CPF Board, neighbourhood watches and civil society organisations in each district in the province to raise awareness around the importance of this Bill, and to ask the public to provide input. To date we have received an overwhelming response and I would like to encourage the public to use this last week to share their thoughts about the Bill.

The Bill, which was published in February 2012, for public comment, is available on our website www.westerncape.gov.za . Members of the public, organisations and interested parties are invited to submit written comment, before 15 May 2012, to:

email: hodcomsafe@pgwc.gov.za

Fax: 021 483 6412, Att: Dr Gilbert Lawrence, Head of Department, Community Safety

Post: PO BOX 5346, Cape Town, 8000. Att: Dr Gilbert Lawrence, Head of Department, Community Safety

Better Together. Safer Together.

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