Sweetgrass First Nation has implemented a community safety night watch initiative after a string of petty crimes in the community.
The most common crimes are break and enters and vandalism.
Community member Warren Favel helped spearhead the program and is the night watch supervisor.
“It’s been going on too long, there is a lot of mischief going on and a lot of break and enters,” he says. “We just want a safer place for our community.”
The night watchmen are equipped with flashlights, notepads and high visibility safety vests.
If they see a crime taking place, they immediately notify local RCMP who are then able to respond more quickly with the relevant information.
“They communicate well with the RCMP,” Favel says. “If they see mischief going on, or anything unusual at night, then they notify the RCMP. They appreciate the night watch program.”
The program was launched at the end of October and the patrol runs from 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. every night.
The number of crimes has decreased since the operation began and it has been well received on the local Facebook page.
Favel encourages other communities experiencing similar crime problems to adopt the program.
The Sweetgrass First Nation is located about 35 kilometres west of North Battleford.