The Crime Free Multi Housing Program is a new concept in community programs. Dover Police Department was the first agency in Delaware to initiate this program. The program specifically targets rental neighborhoods, which are typically different from single-home developments in many ways. The program is designed to target crime in three phases:
The first phase of the program educates the managers of the targeted neighborhoods by teaching them what they can and cannot do related to Landlord-Tenant Laws. Managers are encouraged to be more discriminate while doing their background checks and to conduct credit and criminal history checks on prospective applicants. Managers are also taught Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (C.P.T.E.D) principles concerning surveillance, territoriality and access control.
The second phase involves a physical inspection of the housing complex to ensure that the buildings meet minimum safety standards. This inspection would be done by management with the assistance of the police department and city inspections if needed.
The third and final phase of the program is a Safety Social event, which brings together all parties involved (management, tenants and police) to discuss personal safety and crime prevention issues. Each housing development would organize the event and request that a Community Police Officer attend. Once the residents become involved in the program, they will develop pride in themselves and their community.