How to stay safe in the city
ENCA recently conducted an interview with South African Cities Network Researcher, Siphelele Ngobese, regarding the networks report entitled, ‘The State of Urban Safety in South Africa’. The report states that residents in the City of Cape Town are more likely to be victims of crime than the rest of South Africa.
As you know, our GP/OKCID team is tasked with creating a safe, clean, attractive and accessible place for you to live, work and play – so please call on us when you need to, and heed the following safety advice:
Simply making certain that there is nothing left visible on a car seat and that your car is parked in a safe, well-lit area can make all the difference.
Double checking house alarms are activated, ensuring keys are not left in security gates and that gates are properly latched and locked can go a big way in preventing petty and unnecessary crime.
Trust your gut
There is one aspect of safety that we feel is not spoken about enough: the value of trusting your intuition. In the following few paragraphs, we are going to unpack how intuition can be a valuable tool and why you should trust your ‘gut feeling’.
According to an article by Valerie van Mulukom, Research Associate in Psychology from Coventry University, as with analytical thinking ‘intuition or gut feelings are also the result of a lot of processing that happens in the brain.’ Mulukom says that the brain is a large predictive machine which compares incoming sensory information and current experiences against stored knowledge and memories.
Emotions which culminate in gut feelings are actually not dumb responses that always need to be ignored or even corrected by rational tendencies. They are evaluations of what you have just experienced or thought of – in this sense, they are also a form of information processing.
That means that previous experiences will assist a person in predicting what will come next. Intuition is a fast, automatic, subconscious processing style that can provide us with very useful information that deliberate analysing can’t. We need to accept that intuitive and analytic thinking should occur together, and be weighed up against each other in difficult decision-making situations.
How to apply this to everyday life?
If you feel uncomfortable in a setting or around an individual, we suggest acting on that gut feeling and removing yourself from the scenario. This may be as simple as crossing the road – if you notice the person that evoked the gut feeling mimics your behaviour, you can be re-assured that your intuition is right.
What to do next?
Make your way to the nearest shop, restaurant or garage and surround yourself with people.
Call our 24-hour patrol vehicle and report the suspicious person(s) – you may help prevent the next crime.
Report slowly and clearly items of clothing or features that will allow our safety officers to identify the potential suspect – we are all responsible for ensuring the safety of the place we live in and love.
We are privileged to live in a beautiful city and there are many wonderful things to enjoy. Do not allow anxiety around crime to overwhelm your experience, simply remain aware and remember to trust your instincts.
Keep our 24-hour patrol vehicle numbers on hand should you ever require assistance.
GP CID Patrol Vehicle (24 hrs): 082 214 3228
OK CID Patrol Vehicle (24 hrs): 082 217 1386