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Keeping It Crime-Free: Safety and Good PR

Amy Campbell

July 17, 2009

2 Min Read
Keeping It Crime-Free: Safety and Good PR

Try as it might to battle a negative public image, self-storage just can't seem to "get clean" in the eyes of some people. But things are improving. I scour the Internet daily for news stories about this industry, and it's refreshing to see the number of positive stories increasing. Articles about robberies, crime and "victims" whose goods are sold at lien sale still make up the lion's share, but slowly the scales are shifting.

Early this week, a facility in Wichita Falls, Texas, received a public blow after a meth lab was discovered in one of its units (Tenant Caught Storing Meth). But today a follow-up story appeared in which the facility owner talks about a new crime-free program she'll be joining with local law enforcement (Crime-Free Program for Self-Storage). Part of this was lucky timing ... The Wichita Falls PD has been working with apartment-complex managers in the area, teaching them ways to recognize and reduce criminal and unsafe activity on site. They'd thought to extend the program to storage facilities; Tuesday's incident sealed the deal.

It rarely happens, but in this case, the facility owner was able to create some positive PR out of a bad situation. And she is now participating in a program that will not only help keep her facility safe, she can promote it to tenants as a benefit of storing at her site.

Inside Self-Storage once published an article about a facility manager who offered his facility as a training site for police dogs (K-9 Capers: Arizona facility relies on police dogs to keep the peace). Sometimes you have to be think outside the box when it comes to security, but there's a two-pronged benefit to doing so: increased peace of mind for the facility and for tenants, and a positive angle for media.

Do you participate in  crime-watch or other crime-prevention programs in your area? Do you offer space to local law enforcement for training or meetings? Do police regularly drive through your property? Share your safety strategies! And if you'd like to participate in an online conversation about preventing meth labs and other crime on self-storage properties, check out the "Meth & Self-Storage" thread on Self-Storage Talk.

About the Author(s)

Amy Campbell

Editor, Inside Self Storage

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