Residents Do Feel Safe Despite Survey Results - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Residents Do Feel Safe Despite Survey Results

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YAKIMA, Wash.-- A few weeks ago the city release the results of the second citizen survey.

One of the main issues people responded to was the fact they did not feel safe in their neighborhoods and wanted to see a bigger police presence in the community.

However locals we spoke with said they already feel safe thanks to law enforcement here in the city.

"I think that just having their presence and knowing that they are there to take care of things and help out the citizens of Yakima," said Yakima resident, Laura Sommer.

In the citizen survey locals said safety is the most important issue when it comes to livability in Yakima.

City officials said crime is down 9% since the beginning of the year, and even people who live outside the city limits agree that things do feel safe.

"I generally feel comfortable and safe in Yakima. I mean I think a lot of it is being aware of where you are and what not, but I think people feel friendly and a lot of it is you're being friendly to them, they will respond kindly too," said Terrace heights resident, Siri Strom

And for only being around for a year, the police bike patrol downtown is also making a difference.

"People see them, they feel more comfortable, there is more of a presence," Strom said.

"If there is something that happens while people are on foot, they are so much faster than anyone can run. i think just the added presence is really going to help," Sommer said.

Locals said a larger police presence is a positive change to Yakima.

The police department is also working on an assigned police vehicle program where officers drive their police cars between work and home all to increase the police presence and increase patrol time.

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