WhistleStop first-defense crime stopping

WhistleSTOP personal crime stop Committee and Program

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This page brought to you by Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference, the WhistleStop Committee, and HPKCC's website, www.hydepark.org.
Join the Conference
! WhistleStop Chair Timika Hoffman-Zoller. Contact us for whistles. hpkcc@aol.com.

SEE OUR FLYER, including where whistles can be bought now.

HPKCC program home. Committees. About HPKCC. Quality of Life Hot Topics and Issues.

Please call first at 773 288-8343 or info@hydepark.org. Whistles cost $2 each. Call also for contacts to our chairs for buying in bulk or other information.
YOU CAN NOW PURCHASE ON LINE- GO TO http://www.hydepark.org- under Programs click WhistleStop...

Background- visit Why Block Clubs and Urban Renewal era Block Clubs and HPKCC.
WHAT IS A BLOCK CLUB please visit this link: https://portal.chicagopolice.org/portal/page/portal/BlockClub/Resources/WhatIs

Read June 6 2012 Herald article


View our current flyer on WhistleSTOP.
Visit report on HPKCC's April 19, 2010 "Keeping YOU and Your Computer Safe" seminar.

We urge you to attend to these opportunities

Visit the revamped, interactive, reporting and informational CLEARpath site www.chicagopolice.org.

Your CAPS meeting!! See new schedule in CAPS News or Community Meetings Calendar. Some are changed in summer and in November and December. For the central part of the neighborhood Ellis/Woodlawn to the lake, it's 3rd Wednesdays at 6:30 at Hyde Park Neighborhood Club. Persons on the edges will have to travel a bit outside to their beat meetings, on different days.

Whistlestop program back. From the June 6 Hyde Park Herald, by Marissa Warner

The non-violent WhistleStop program, which started in 1972, allows local residents to combat crime, has been revived by the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference safety committee chair, Timika Hoffman-Zoller. Zoller said that the program empowers Hyde Parkers to stop crime or violence by blowing a whistle to alert neighbors of a problem so that they can call the police.

Whistles can be kept in pockets or on key chains so that when confronted by trouble or observing trouble, it is easy to get to, Hoffman-Zoller said. We want criminals to know that Hyde Park is no longer safe for them, said Zoller."We're not playing, we will blow our whistles," she said.

Whistles can be purchased for $2 The group can also be contacted at 773-288-8343 or by e-mail at hpkcc@aol.com. Zoller warns that the whistles are not toys for children and are not a substitute for calling 911 or the University of Chicago Police at 773-702-8181.

City of Chicago's First Response Team (CERT).
Timika Hoffman-Zoller, HPKCC Safety Co-chair, writes:

I am a CERT - a volunteer emergency first responder for the City of Chicago.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program is free and offers an all-risk, all-hazard training designed to help you protect yourself, your family, your neighbors and your neighborhood in an emergency situation. The CERT 20-hour program educates citizens about disaster preparedness and trains individuals in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, disaster psychology disaster medical operations, and terrorism and homeland defense. http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/oem/provdrs/edu/svcs/become_a_cert_volunteer.html.

It’s a valuable course and I would like to encourage everyone in the community to take it because the more of my friends and neighbors who are trained the more it will help lighten the burden should an emergency arise. Then after taking the 20 hour course, you’ll have a choice of taking the CERT knowledge for your own personal use or you can also consider becoming a volunteer first responder for the City. Then when emergencies happen, you will be able to give critical support to first responders, and provide immediate assistance to victims. Also, as a CERT member you can also assist with non-emergency projects that help improve the safety of the community. I must add that we CERT's have a great time throughout the year by participating in a variety of educational, fun, and free refreshers first responder activities.

So please consider taking the CERT course. You can email Matt at chicagocitizencorps@cityofchicago.org to find out when the next CERT classes are coming up.

Don’t Leave Home Without Your Whistle! [But know when the situation is beyond blowing a whistle.]
By Joanne Howard [HPKCC board member and then WhistleStop Chair][From the April 2007 Conference Reporter]

The Hyde Park Kenwood Community Conference is a long time champion of the WhistleStop Program. WhistleStop is a program that initially began in California and spread to Chicago. It is a community action/safety program that encourages people to blow their whistle when you see something menacing about to occur.

Based on reports from our local CAPS meetings and the SECC, Hyde Park, Kenwood, and the areas to the north and south are experiencing lower crime rates. We would like to assist in encouraging this trend by placing a WhistleStop whistle in every community member’s hand.

Blowing a whistle calls attention to a crime in action, and it exposes the criminal and helps the victim. The success of this community action safety program is to ward off criminal activity by letting criminals know they are not safe in the Hyde Park area.

Purchase whistles from the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference by calling 288-8343 or email us at hpkcc@aol.com. You can also buy them at the HPKCC table at the Coop on [2nd] Saturday mornings [noontimes]. Spend $2.00 for a whistle. You will be glad you did!


Our Committee: Interim chair is Camille Hamilton-Doyle.

Committee campaign inaugural statement: Stand up to crime in Hyde Park

Violent crime in our neighborhood can STOP. We can STOP feeling helpless and stand up to crime. The Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference invites all residents to participate in the Hyde Park WhistleSTOP community action safety program.

The WhistleSTOP program was initiated 25 years ago as a way to empower Hyde Park residents to take safe action during a crime.

The premise is for our entire community to be in possession of a whistle. When a crime occurs, the victim or witnesses blow their whistles alerting other fellow Hyde Parkers who will in turn blow their whistles while moving toward the direction of the first whistle blown.

The blowing of whistles calls attention to the crime in action, bringing the crime to an abrupt halt and attracting the attention of the police in the area. The ultimate success of this community action safety program is when criminals know that Hyde Park is no longer safe for them.

What can you do to create a safer Hyde Park? Buy a WhistleSTOP whistle through the Hyde Park Kenwood Community Conference or a WhistleSTOP distributor for $2. Be a WhistleSTOP building or block leader by distributing whistles to residents in your building or on your block. Attend the area CAPS meetings. Attend a free Street Safety Seminar.

Most importantly, blow your whistle when your fellow Hyde Parker is in need. Let's model the behavior we desire from our neighborhood.

Whistles can be purchased at the courtesy booth in the 55th Street Co-op.* For more information, to join the WhistleSTOP program as a volunteer, or to purchase additional whistles, call the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference at 288-8343 or email us at hpkcc@aol.com.

Joanne Howard, Bill Pavelec, WhistleSTOP Committee, Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference

*Not true at present. We hope to resume selling 2nd Saturdays 11-1 at Treasure Island.


Herald report April 19, 2006: HPKCC crime stopper revisited. By Tedd Carrison

Following a year that saw major robbery, burglary and shooting patterns throughout Hyde Park, neighbors Joanne Howard and Bill Pavelec are working to revitalize a once-popular crime deterrent program.

As part of his campaign to make Hyde Park the "safest community in Ch Chicago," Pavelec said he hopes resident will latch on to WhistleSTOP like they did when it was introduced roughly 25 years ago.

WhistleSTOP is sponsored by the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference. It distributes whistles at locations around the neighborhood and instructs residents to sound them if they witness a crime. In theory, the noise should scare off the offender or garner enough attention to help capture him. "Hyde Park is a community of people looking out for each other, it's not a community of individuals," said Pavelec. He also wanted to designate June a safety awareness month and provide forums where residents can share crime prevention tips. "There needs to be a presence," he said. "One of our goals is to remind people that one of the simplest things you can do is first, buy a whistle and second, is blowing the whistle."

To buy whistles or volunteer for the WhistleSTOP program contact the HPKCC at 288-8343 or via e-mail at hpkcc@aol.com.

What WhistleSTOP is, how it works


You can view directly/print the graphic above by clicking here.

whistle instructional handout front


whistle instructional handout back

Printable page of 'How and When to Use'

How and when to use.

Participating in the creation of a safe and secure community has been the focus of the WhistleSTOP Committee since the program was initiated in the high-crime period (with inspiration from California, it's said, suggestion of Ross Lathrop and help of Hyde Park Bank. HPKCC rolled out its program February 23, 1972. It was again revived separately by HPKCC and the University of Chicago Police in August, 1988. More (a Summer 2004 Conference Reporter feature). Committee Chairman: Joanne Howard (contact HPKCC).

By making available special whistles and instituting a program based on neighbor attention and cooperation, we saw, in conjunction with policing coordination and other initiatives, an increase in our collective comfort level with the safety and security of our neighborhood, born out by law enforcement statistics. 

Now, there has been an uptick in problems, and WhistleSTOP is available to help again, but people have to know what the program is and how to use it. And police are very enthusiastic about WhistleStop. The program combines:

Individual Action: I can signal for help and get it.

Neighborhood Action: We can protect one another and work together.

Citizen-Police Action: We can assist the police effectively. This program in no way attempts to circumvent or supersede the police. When possible, your first line of defense is still to call 911 and the U of C Police, 773 702-8181.

Note: These whistles are particularly sturdy and generate a very loud whistle. See below for "When to use your whistle." This is not a toy, and that should be explained to children.

For special whistlestop community sales dates check our community calendar or call 773 288-8343. 

If you are interested in a bulk order contact us. Top


How and when to use your whistle
You are confronted on the street

1. Cooperate. It's safer for you.
2. BLOW YOUR WHISTLE when physically safe. Others: respond and call the police.

You fear trouble on the street 1. Run toward the middle of the street.
2 BLOW YOUR WHISTLE. Others: respond and call the police.
You observe trouble on the street

1. BLOW YOUR WHISTLE to scare off the assailant
2. Keep at a safe distance.
3. KEEP BLOWING. Stay until the police arrive.

You observe trouble from your home or car or you hear a whistle

1. Call police fast. State clearly address and description of the incident observed.
2. Open your window and BLOW YOUR WHISTLE.
3. Go outside, move toward first whistle and KEEP BLOWING.
4. Assist victim if possible, and stay until the police arrive.

Carry your whistle and post your sticker. Parents: Children should know the seriousness of whistle blowing in our community and how they can participate in their project. Discuss with them the above instructions. Top

The Conference at Work: WhistleStop

by Joanne Howard

WhistleStop is a committee and program of HPKCC. For members who are unfamiliar with the program it was brought to the Conference by Ross Lathrop in the early 1970s. This program is an action-safety program that provides each resident of our community with a practical way to protect themselves and their neighbors on the street.

Essentially, a person purchases a whistle and carries it with them. If you see suspicious activity or need to protect yourself or a neighbor from physical harm, you can signal for help by blowing your whistle. Members of the Hyde Park-Kenwood community understand the meaning of the whistle and will gravitate towards the direction of the sound.
People who perpetrate unlawful acts want to do so in silence. The WhistleSTOP program is a "blow" to their attempt to commit such an act in silence.
Please visit our Web site at www.hydepark.org. Or simply call the office (773-288-8343) and we will get one to you. We look forward to getting a whistle in your hands.