Minister Fritz welcomes updates on Area-Based Teams activities
Today, the Minister of Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, is elated at update-reports on the establishment of Area-Based Teams (ABT) in identified areas in the Province. The establishment of ABTs in identified areas is a major step forward in the Provincial Safety Plan.
An ABT is a methodology established in a specific community aimed at maximizing collective impact in realizing the core imperative of the Provincial Safety Plan, which is to reduce the murder rate by 50% by 2029. The Safety Plan aims to do this by integrating law enforcement, violence prevention and urban design into targeted, focused interventions which are based on data and evidence. ABTs take a WOSA (whole of society approach) that is premised on getting all local role-players, inside and outside of government, to work together in pursuit of the common objectives of the Safety Plan.
ABTs are presently being established in Atlantis, Bishop Lavis, Delft, Khayelitsha, Harare, Samora Machel, Gugulethu, Mitchells Plain, Philippi/Hanover Park, Kraaifontein, as well as the five district municipalities in the province.
In Atlantis, DOCS is setting up meetings with different community stakeholders to bring awareness of the ABT to the area and to get input on what the needs are in the community. It is also a crucially important means of getting community buy-in for the ABT.
Today, Wednesday, 15 September 2021, a stakeholder mapping workshop will be held with community members in Bishop Lavis. The purpose of that workshop will be to look at questions such as, who is working in Bishop Lavis? What are they doing? How can they be included in the ABT?, and more. Different government stakeholders and what they can do for the community is also being surveyed. At the same time, DOCS is also engaging implementation teams for family programmes, GBV programmes and other initiatives which will be beneficial for the community.
In Gugulethu, DOCS has been meeting with Mayoral Urban Regeneration Programme teams in the City of Cape Town, and are in the process of reviewing the safety plan which was developed for Gugulethu in 2018.
This past Saturday, an intensive engagement with the SAPS on bringing different safety-partners on board was held in Mitchells Plain. Following that meeting, the Law Enforcement Technical Area Team is closer to being established, while the social-cohesion meeting with community and government stakeholders are moving ahead. In Kraaifontein, engagements with SAPS and the CPFs are ongoing, and NHWs and other community organisations are being surveyed.
Minister Fritz said, “we are very excited at the work that is being done in all the identified areas in the establishment of the ABTs. The ABTs are really the second major leg to our Safety Plan. We’ve established the LEAP side of the Safety Plan, which seeks to increase visible policing. On Monday we were pleased to announce the commencement of training of an additional 250 LEAP Officers, with their deployment scheduled for mid-December. With the establishment of the ABTs, the foundations of our Safety Plan are entrenched, and we are now ready to look at implementing the next level, which is really building our relationship with SAPS even more and taking on even more policing responsibility.”
Minister Fritz concluded, “We were given a mandate by the electorate in 2019, after we campaigned on making safety a priority in this province. And we are delivering on that. Now that our Safety Plan is running, we have begun calling on the National Department of Police to entrust the Western Cape Government with greater policing responsibilities, which the Constitution makes provision for. We are determined to see this journey through to the end, which is a safer Western Cape for all our citizens, especially those who are living on the Cape Flats where so much of the violence takes place, because the safety of our citizens is crucially important to us.”