First meeting of the expat community and the director of Public Security
By Antonio de Jesús Aguado
For the first time, during the current local administration, the director of the Public Security Department, Gabriel Arturo Yáñez Saldaña, gathered with the expat community, the mayor demand was: more patrols and bilingual police officers.
On October 7, approximately 100 foreigners, gathered at the Teatro Santa Ana with the director of Public Security. Yáñez Saldaña explained to the attendees the duties of the federal, state and municipal police departments.
He highlighted that currently in San Miguel de Allende there is a lack of police officers but assured that his department is working in order to hire those with the best profiles and have a safer community.
During this meeting, most of the attendees asked questions, but first they expressed cases of insecurity where they have been the victims, residential burglaries among other crimes; those participating expressed that they have filed the criminal complaints at the Ministerio Público (District’s Attorney Office) but nothing has happened. The director made it clear that his department is not in charge of investigating these crimes, but remarked that they are working with the MP to solve the cases. He invited the attendees to participate in the programs of the department in order to prevent the crime.
The expats asked to launch a new emergency number where they can be served in English, Arturo Yáñez commented that it was not possible due to federal regulations.
The meeting lasted at least two hours but no firm agreements were reached. To Atención, the director expressed that it was a very productive meeting, because he realized that a bilingual person is very necessary at the 066 emergency number to answer the calls in English. He also said that more meetings that will include personnel from the Ministerio Público will be scheduled in the weeks to come (David Bossman, a social activist, confirmed that fact) and highlighted that a new citizens’ committee of security will be formed, which will be the liaison between the department and the community for having access to the information.
Yáñez made it clear that the project of surveillance cameras will be operating in the first trimester of 2014; this project includes 116 cameras across the urban area. The director remarked that although the surveillance cameras will be very helpful, if the community is not integrated and does not work with their authorities then the programs such as neighborhood watch will be useless. All those with ideas and interest in participating with the Public Security Department can go to the area of Vinculación of that department.
Atención has been trying to get an interview with District Attorney René Urrutia, but he has not been available. As soon as we get the interview, we will publish the article.