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Drug chains honored for security collaboration in Houston
September 6th, 2013
SILVER SPRING, Md. – Drug chains CVS/pharmacy and Walgreens were among a group of retailers recognized for public safety and security efforts in a partnership with the Houston Police Department.
The Security Industry Association (SIA) on Thursday named the Houston Police Department and the Greater Houston Loss Prevention Alliance (GHLPA) as the recipients of the Chief Michael Shanahan Award for Excellence in Public-Private Cooperation, which the association awards in tandem with the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP).
Besides CVS and Walgreens, retailers in the alliance included Family Dollar, Fiesta, H-E-B, Kroger, Randalls, Target and Walmart.
The award honors achievement in the development and implementation of public-private cooperation in public safety. The Houston Police Department and the alliance were recognized for an initiative that enables food, drug and other retail stores to work together and with law enforcement to reduce crime in the nation's fourth-largest largest city.
Started in 2009 as part of the police department's Positive Interaction Program (PIP), the initiative includes public awareness campaigns to promote the securing of vehicles and valuables, messages focused on child safety, and efforts to reduce organized retail crime.
"Since the formation of the partnership between the GHLPA and the Houston Police Department, the success and the reduction in crime has been dramatic," the organizations stated in their award application. "The cooperative partnership between the retailers provides expert resources, financial support, access to large numbers of citizens/customers and an efficient method to address crime where the crime occurs, inside and outside retail facilities."
They added, "This impact has made Houston a safer place to shop."
Houston Senior Police Officer James Sobota, the citywide PIP coordinator, noted that the participants, despite being competitors, were eager to share ideas to promote loss prevention and increase security.
"All of the participating retail members are happy to work together as one group, in a proactive approach, to reduce crime in the community," Sobota commented.
The award will be presented on Oct. 20 in Philadelphia during the IACP Annual Conference.