EL CENTRO, Calif. - What makes the City of Imperial the safest place to live, work and play in California?
Safewise, a national safety organization, has given the city that honor for the past two years.
City official Alexis Chalupnik said, “It wouldn’t be possible without the men and women in our police department that make safety of Imperial their number one priority.”
Safewise made its nomination in their June report based on 2015 crime data gathered from the Federal Bureau of Investigations. City of Imperial was ranked among towns of similar population size.
Chalupnik explained the community plays a big role in public safety.
“Our community is also concerned about each other,” Chalupnik said. She added the community is encouraged to always report suspicious activity.
“Really getting the community involved and seeing our police officers, keeping an eye out for their neighbors, working together,” Chalupnik said.
Deputy Chief Leonard J. Barra said their police department works hard to get the community involved.
“If they see something that’s not right or suspicious, they need to give us a call. If they have to call us twenty times a day, they need to do that. We cannot perform our duties without citizens and the community,” Barra said.
He said teamwork among officers makes their work more effective and it raises their morale, as well.
“We talk to each other. We set up game plans. We re-evaluate the game plan once it’s executed and we tweak it out. When we share information, it does bring up morale,” Barra said.
The National Council of Home Safety and Security gave City of Imperial the same honor recently this year, as well.
City officials said they plan to start new neighborhood watch and youth programs, to continue being the safest place in the state.