GPCID 24/7 emergency number: 082 214 3228

OKCID 24/7 emergency number: 082 217 1386

Local Business Q&A – Renée Rossouw International Hair & Make-Up Artist

COVID-19 has hit our local businesses hard, and the impact will last for a long time to come. We want to support the community spirit which has been so evident these last few months and encourage residents to invest in their neighbours. To do this, we’re spotlighting one local business each month.

This week we spoke to Renée, owner of International Hair & Make-Up Artist, to find out about her experience of working in the Oranje-Kloof area, and how she has dealt with the pandemic.

Tell us about your business and why you’re based in the GP/OKCID area.

My business is called International Hair & Make-Up Artist, established on 14 September 2004. What makes my business unique is the high standard of hairdressing services, hair styling services and make-up artistry I offer. I enjoy running my business in the GP/OKCID area because it is lively, vibrant and friendly.

How has this pandemic affected your business?

I still offer my full range of salon services, such as hair cutting; evening up-styles; hair colouring; chemical services and treatments for men, women and children, however my clients’ health and safety is my top priority, so I provide a more sterilised and personalised environment.

–  Clients are required to wear their face mask whenever possible, and I am sure to wear my mask at all times.

–  Their temperatures are checked on entry and hands sanitised.

–  Should their temperature be 37.5 degrees or above, they are not permitted to enter the Hair and Make-up Studio.

–  A health questionnaire is to be completed on arrival, and customers’ names and phone numbers are recorded for contact tracing in the event of another client reporting symptoms.

–  Surfaces and workstations are cleaned and disinfected between use.

Have you felt the presence of the GP/OKCID in your area, and has it helped your business in any way during this pandemic?

I am constantly aware of the GP/OKCID presence in my area and am able to call on them quickly, should the need arise.  The pandemic has not affected their availability in my area.

What advice would you give to other businesses, based on your experience of keeping yours running during this pandemic?

Remain positive and keep on being there for each other. This too shall pass. All will be well.

Take a look at Renée’s work on her website. Whether you would like hair and make-up done for a special occasion, or work in the film and fashion industries, you can contact her at reneerossouw@telkomsa.net. Alternatively, you can call her on 021 426 4479 or 082 649 5502.

GP/OKCID security report – August 2020

There has been a steady increase in incidents of crime since the lift of the hard-lockdown regulations, with double the number of incidents of crime in August compared to June. This increase was expected, due to more activity on our streets as life has returned to a level of normality.

In August, a total of 19 incidents were reported. 8 out of 14 arrests were for theft, and the remaining 6 were for assault and public fighting.

Recently, we’ve been focusing on crime in the the Strand Street quarry, due to the number of complaints received from residents in the surrounding areas. A joint crime operation was recently held with our partners SAPS, Metro Police, traffic services, City law enforcement and the City’s canine unit. The quarry was raided and a total of 9 perpetrators were arrested, and one 13-year-old child removed under the Child Care Act. The City’s CCTS unit frequently assists in identifying suspects linked to those residing at the quarry, but we urge you to remain vigilant while in the De Waterkant and surrounding areas, and always make sure that your vehicle is locked and valuables are out of sight.

Our maintenance team has been busy installing several additional CCTV cameras around our area. We hope that this will lessen criminal activity and help our GP/OKCID patrollers track criminals.

Remember to keep our 24 patrol vehicle numbers on hand for assistance:

GP CID PATROL VEHICLE

082 214 3228

OK CID PATROL VEHICLE

082 217 1386

Combatting crime at the quarry

The Strand Street Quarry ultimately formed the foundation of Cape Town as we know it. The slate from which the Castle of Good Hope was built comes from there. The City has recognised that the land is currently “underutilised and requires regular policing and maintenance at a cost to the City.” However, all past plans have dried up due to a lack of funding, or the restrictions in accordance with the National Heritage status and cultural and religious significance of the site. Today the Strand Street quarry is more widely linked to crime, littering and vagrancy.

We at the Green Point City Improvement District have recently been heavily involved in a joint crime prevention operation held at the quarry. This began as a response to complaints from residents of Green Point and De Waterkant, and was undertaken in partnership with members of SAPS, Metro Police, traffic services, City law enforcement and the City’s canine unit.

Crime stemming from the national heritage site has been steadily increasing over the past few years. There has been a further escalation recently following the release of a number of criminals during lockdown. Some of these individuals have been hiding out and operating from the Strand Street quarry. The City’s CCTV unit reports that the camera on Hout Street frequently assists in identifying suspects, who are often found to be living at the quarry. Incidents of crime captured by the camera range from petty theft and public drinking to drug dealing and fighting.

In August 2020, we assisted with the arrest of nine perpetrators. Three of these were charged with the possession of dangerous weapons, including a large sword and a butcher’s knife, and two were involved in drug-related offences. Four of the nine offenders were illegal immigrants. Police also identified a 13-year-old child living at the quarry, who was removed and taken to safety under the Child Care Act.

Our CEO, Marc Truss, had the following to say about the current situation faced by the Strand Street Quarry: “A number of operations occur at 04h30 in the morning, then we have a briefing at 05h00, so that we are all informed and can continue with crime related operations. We found a number of lethal items on site, and four individuals were arrested for possession of illegal substances on site in one week. We’ve handled subsequent arrests for smash and grabs. We’ve also had sniffer (Metro) dogs who track illegal substances, and further arrests for their possession. Our top priorities are to obtain eviction allowances, and to send security and cleansing teams to deal with the refuse and filth which will soon pose a health hazard. We are aware of the level of crime that comes from the quarry, and something has to be done about it.”

We are committed to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the Green Point community, and will keeping striving for a crime-free reality. If you ever feel unsafe or require assistance with a crime-related issue, please do not hesitate to contact our 24/7 GPCID patrol vehicle on 082 214 3228.

Our response to concerns regarding homelessness and illegal land invasions

The approach to finding sustainable solutions to help the homeless in Cape Town is shifting, especially in light of COVID-19.

The recent High Court judgement against the City and various other parties demonstrates an attempt by authorities to safeguard vulnerable persons across the metropolitan area while we endure this state of disaster. However, the judgement brings into question the impact of illegal informal occupation of land designated for public use.

The High Court interdict means that both the City and private landowners are prevented from demolishing unoccupied informal structures, or evicting people from them. The City are appealing the dangerous High Court interdict which prevents the protection of property from land invasion. They believe that changing this verdict is vital for them to uphold the Rule of Law and protect public land intended for services, housing, community facilities, schools and transport services.

What are we doing?

Our team and board of directors are reaching out to partners, landowners and concerned NGOs. We intend to coordinate a plan of action so that we can respond to, and rectify, the issue of the construction of illegal informal structures.

COVID-19 has taught us many things, not least the benefit of being more focused on our own communities. As the pandemic continues to affect the day to day activities and movements of the public under lockdown, there is growing concern over what our team are doing for the homeless and unemployed.

Our CEO, Marc Truss, explains how the GP/OKCID is dealing with the current homelessness situation in the Green Point and Oranje-Kloof areas: “Because of the High Court interdict preventing landowners from exercising their right to remove empty, unoccupied structures as a means of protecting property from invasion, we’re trying to work with, advise, and guide the homeless. We’re trying to communicate that we’re not hard and inflexible – we listen and offer solutions. We speak to the homeless and explain that we can’t give them a place to live, but to live on the street means they have to clean up after themselves. Those who don’t abide by this are warned, and as a final action, arrested. This has been working in the meantime.”

What you can do?

The most effective way for you to help the homeless is to give responsibly. Jane Meyer, MPRA coordinator, explains that giving responsibly means donating to NGOs and other organisations committed to helping the homeless, such as night shelters, rather than giving ad hoc donations to the homeless on the streets. By donating to shelters such as The Haven Night Shelter on Napier Street or the City’s Space in Culemborg and NGOs like Ladles of Love or RPJ Helping Hands, residents support assistance to, but also the continued social development, of the homeless. Read our recent blog post for more information on how you can help contribute to sustainable solutions.

Should you witness the start of illegal invasions of land or informal structures being constructed, please immediately call 107 (from a landline) or 021 480 7700 (from a cell phone) as the structure can only be removed if Law Enforcement arrive whilst it is being put up.

REPORT A PROBLEM

If you have information about any suspicious behaviour or witness a crime please report it to us immediately. Please provide as much detail as possible.