With an apparent rise in crime around Burlington’s downtown, the Burlington Business Association wants to make sure shoppers feel safe.

The BBA is bringing back its Downtown Ambassador and Escort Program. The program enlists ambassadors to be an extra set of eyes and ears, help people with directions, check in on shops, and escort downtown employees to and from their cars.

The executive director of the BBA, Kelly Devine, notes shoppers are what keep many local businesses afloat, and they shouldn’t be afraid of going downtown. The escort program was started last year for downtown employees due to the shortage of patrol officers.

“We have had some indications of increases in assaults against people who are working downtown, so we want to make sure we can do everything we can to make the downtown shopping experience safe,” she said.

“Everybody wants to come to Burlington to see the tree, they want to shop down here, so we want to make sure it’s the best experience possible,” Devine notes.

The program employs two ambassadors, Wednesday through Sunday from 12pm to 8pm, and 2pm to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. The ambassadors will be dressed in bright yellow security jackets if anyone is in need of assistance.