If you've never heard of PAC5, never been to a PAC5 monthly meeting, or never subscribe to the PAC5 email list, then perhaps you don't know what PAC5 is about. Here is, basically what you'll want to know about PAC5...
PAC5, Partners Against Crime, District 5 is a Downtown Durham, Ninth Street and Edgemont Community community-government organization that has been in existence for quite a while. According to the Durham City Police Department website, the PACs were created to promote collaboration among, city residents, city government, and the city police. The Police department divided the city into 5 separate districts and downtown Durham and the Edgemont community, fell into the fifth (5th) district, hence: PAC5.
PAC5 memberships appear to be strictly informal and voluntarily. There are no applications for membership, no fees to pay, and nothing to sign. However, a sign-in sheet is generally passed around the meetings. Residents, city employees and police officials meet, face to face, monthly to disseminate information that concerns the district. The meetings are generally led by residents, known as facilitators. In the case of PAC5, there are currently two facilitators who share the responsibility of leading the meetings.
As the name implies, issues regarding security are often discussed. Generally, the police will provide tips, and information about community and personal security. Although, many of the security tips are common sense, it is always good to hear them repeated. Some of the tips serve as news to some people who has never heard them before. Other safety tips serve as reinforcement information to others. Information about crimes the police have cleared are sometimes disseminated. Sometimes, a description of a person or people the police are interested in will be discussed. These discussions are primarily intended to help the community stay vigilant.
Crime and security are not always the main focus of our meetings. Your local PAC also serves as your vehicle to gain direct access to city and government staff and officials. Rarely has Durham city or Durham county staff and goverment officials declined an invitation from our PAC to appear and address an issue of concern. As a result, PAC5 has help address issues that concerned both the downtown business and stakeholder community as well as issues concening the residential and neighboorhood community.
Historically, one of the most important tools used by PAC 5 (and other PAC Districts) is the email server, generally referred to as the PAC5 Listserv. The PAC 5 Listserv, powered by Groups.Yahoo.com, allows subscribers to send email to other subscribers in real time. The listserv is often used for alerts, news and reminders. Occasionally, conversations about a non safety or crime topic may erupt among a group of subscribers. Such conversations are not off limit as long as they are not off topic; the topic should deal with an issue that PAC 5 has taken up.