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Message From Your President
I hope that each of you had great programs at your National Night Out activities. Here in Roanoke, we had several events across the Valley and the turnout seemed very good this year. I encourage each of you to send me pictures from any of your civic events or programsand I will get them on the website. The purpose of the website is to inform the public about upcoming events but also to report how these programs turned out. As the Regional Associations have meetings I encourage you to send me your minutes so that we can place them on the website to pass along to other members as well as to the public. The website is a great public relations tool and really stresses my goal in the upcoming year of improving communication. As President of the Virginia Crime Prevention Association, I have had the opportunity to talk to many people as well as organizations and businesses and I can see how communication is lacking across the State. As with many things, politics play a major role and will cause communication breakdown. A great deal of communication problems I am observing across Virginia is due to individual's feelings being hurt and false rumors being spread. I encourage each of you to examine your role in crime prevention and see if you are acting in good faith or if you are acting out of self-interest. What has happened in the past between organizations and individuals with the Crime Prevention Association is in the past! I urge each of you to step back and try to see the overall good of what we are trying to achieve and make a positive contribution. One of the big topics that I have heard about and have had to address since I have been in Office is that we are providing little to no training to law enforcement across the State. I have also heard that faith has been lost in the VCPA because of this lack of training. As a result of this "faith" issue, people are urging other members and Regional Associations to break away from the VCPA and become more autonomous and to not pay membership dues. Then I have sat in meetings and had Regional Associations tell me that they did not want to break away from the VCPA but they simply wanted to do their own thing. Regional Associations were originally set up to service different areas of the State as programs and issues came up. They are here to serve a purpose and are set up in bylaws of every Regional Association and the VCPA. I know this because many are now trying to change the bylaws to reflect the desire to not be under the VCPA. I have recently been assured by DCJS that they are looking at training proposals from the VCPA and should soon have an Agenda to offer training across the State. I urge you to hang in there and have patience for a while longer with us. I have no doubt that it will pay off for you and your Organization. Training costs money and if you stop paying membership dues to the VCPA you will continue to be part of the problem. This is the time when Regions and individual members should step up because they want to improve training not just out of a feeling of obligation or loyalty to the VCPA. I am constantly looking for new ways to bring revenue in and I am always willing to listen if anyone has any ideas on this issue. But bottom line is we need your support and this is started by paying your membership dues to the VCPA. The membership form is online and you can start sending it in anytime. We have extended membership opportunities to many more businesses and individuals than in the past. You do not have to be law enforcement or a business to be a member. All you have to do is to have a strong interest in crime prevention. Again, as one of the leading organizations in crime prevention across the State, the Virginia Crime Prevention Association wants to remind everyone that October is "National Crime Prevention Month". Please take this opportunity to schedule training, programs, or activities to stress the importance of Crime Prevention in Virginia.