What are youth patrols?
Youth patrolling is one of the basic Youth Crime Watch of Liberia components.
The concept is simple: Young people work together in a formal structure, with
help from adults, to patrol the campus of the school in pairs or small groups,
acting nonconfrontationally to help maintain order, enforce rules, and report
crime or crime-threatening situations. They are not tasked to apprehend
criminals. They may serve as mediators with proper training. The patrol members
may help with prevention education for students and staff.
Enlisting young people as active partners in building a safer school increases
their commitment to prevention, provides additional help in spotting trouble or
possible trouble, and reduces fear and crime. That's why many schools have
sponsored student patrols.
General rules and regulations of a student patrol:
- Students will be supervised by an adult advisor
- Students will not intervene in any crime, they will simply report it
- Students will be trained to report serious violations to an adult leader
- Students will receive quality training in how to respond to situations
Six ways that youth patrols make schools safer
- Youth - both in and out of the patrol - take greater ownership of the school
community because they see adults as willing to share the responsibility with
- Peers can be more effective than adults in working with other youth, especially
with proper training.
- Patrol members help set standards and expectations for peers' behavior.
- Having additional trained observers - the patrol members - noting and reporting
not just specific crimes or rules violations but problems that could lead to
crime increases the safety of all in the school.
- An active, successful patrol encourages other students to report crimes or
- A well-structured patrol, one that involves a wide cross-section of the student
body, builds a sense of unity and community among students.