01/16/2012 03:13 EST | Updated 03/17/2012 05:12 EDT

Vancouver crime rates dropping

Vancouver's Mayor Gregor Robertson says a drop in crime rates indicates the city is getting much safer, but rates are still above the national average.

A new report shows over the last five years, property crime is down 29 per cent, violent crime has dropped 12 per cent and police response times are nearly a minute faster.

Mayor Robertson says the report, which was released by the Vancouver Police Department on Monday, shows its strategies are working.

"The VPD has been at the front edge of really progressive policing, from looking at support for community court, homeless outreach, supporting mental illness policy and sensible drug policy," said Robertson.

"I think all of those combine to reducing crime and disorder on the streets and building a lot of trust with the community."

Robertson says the goal is to become the safest major city in Canada, and city council will be pushing to add more officers over the next couple of years.