Over the past few months we’ve noticed an increase in domestics falling victim to robbery from person throughout Port Elizabeth. In almost every case, it was found that the circumstances surrounding the incidents of a domestic being robbed were the same:
1. They were walking alone.
2. They were walking through an isolated / deserted area such as a park, open field, etc.
We strongly recommend that residents, who employ domestics, take a few minutes to chat to their staff to make them aware of the spate of attacks on domestics and educate them on the risks of taking short cuts through isolated areas. These isolated areas make it difficult for other community members / residents to see or hear them, should something happen.
Although it may take them a little longer to walk around the park, open grass area / field, golf courses, etc. we certainly recommend they rather take the longer route, where residents and community members as well as our vehicles, would be able to see if something happens. In addition to this, we advise that the domestics within an area consider getting together at a central point, before and after work so that they walk together to their place of work or transport pickup point. Being in a group, rather than on their own, will certainly reduce their risks of becoming a victim too.
We must stress that this should not only be applicable to domestics but also the residents of the area, when going for a run or walking their dogs, etc. Doing so alone, especially through areas of the suburb which are not generally accessed by others, is unintentionally providing opportunity for would-be assailants. A study has found that, in most cases, crimes took place because of the opportunity presented and there was originally no intention to commit the crime, making it purely opportunistic. By leaving doors and windows open, by walking through isolated or deserted areas on your own, by walking to or from school whilst texting on your phone, etc. these are all instances of presenting an opportunity for a crime to occur.
By reducing the amount of unintentional opportunities, each of us contributes to the reduction in the possibility of a crime being committed.