“Light up the City” in Jackson is hoping to brighten communities and reduce crime in the area.
Volunteers, Consumer Energy employees and Jackson police officers came together to kick off the first walk of the summer. They handed out bags filled with free light bulbs for porch lights, energy saving tips and a raffle ticket to win a free air conditioning unit.
“We’ve seen that when there’s more lighting in neighborhoods people feel safer but also deter crime,” said Public Information Officer for the city of Jackson, Aaron Dimick.
“Light up the City” first started in Saginaw in 2013. Since then, the city has seen a 16 percent decrease in the amount of crime. Now, the city of Jackson is selecting areas that could use the help the most.
“We pick a neighborhood that we think could use some lighting then we have state police troopers who go out before the event to kind of look around to say maybe we could target this area because they don’t have as much lighting or this area seems well lit,” said Dimick.
Another goal is to make the city more “walkable” for people to commute around the community safely.
Volunteers and workers at the walk say that this is more than keeping porch lights on and that it’s a chance for the neighborhoods to get to know each other.
“This makes Jackson safer, and that’s what we want to do, and we want to walk around and get to know our neighbors better and it’s an opportunity for neighbors to get to know each other better so it’s a community event,” said Community Affairs Manager for Consumers Energy, Anthony Parker.
Neighbors around the area say they are thankful for the people who passed out these bags and that they’ll feel more safer with more lights on their street.
“I think it’s a smart idea, to make sure people can see at night, it’s good,” said Jackson resident, Lynnette Hock.
The next walk will be Thursday, June 27th, and continue on every Thursday through the summer, except for July 4th.