• Recent Posts on Crime Victim Rights, Violence Prevention and Smart Policing

  • Major UN Crime Congress to Celebrate and Advance Magna Carta for Victim Rights

    Millions of people, including many women and children, throughout the world still suffer harm unnecessarily as a result of crime, abuse of power and terrorism. Despite 30 years of progress, too many victims have too few rights. In addition, too many suffer hardship when assisting in the prosecution of perpetrators.

    In 1985, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a land mark decision for victims by resolving to prevent victimization and implement the UN Declaration on Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power.

    The UN Organization on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is organizing a special ¨High Level Event¨ to take stock of progress and provide guidance for the future at the UN Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. The Congress is expected to be attended by more than 7000 persons, including the top Justice and Public Safety officials from more than 150 national governments.

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    Science Not Retribution will Stop Homicide

    How can we honor the hope expressed by Michael Brown Sr. that the death of his son Michael in Ferguson, Mo., last summer will ¨lead to incredible change, positive change, change that makes the St. Louis region better for everyone?”

    St Louis has such high losses of life from homicide that, on a per capita basis, it is one of four U.S. cities in the list of the 50 most violent cities in the world and it is rising in this embarrassing list. But this is not inevitable, it is preventable but it will require politicians to use Smarter Crime Control to apply science to save seven thousand or more lives and by the way save tens of billions of tax dollars annually.

    Unfortunately the informed debaters such as the recent New York Times Debate about public safety still do not talk about effective violence prevention. They ignore the US science on effective and cost effective violence prevention, which show that we already know how to prevent violence and it is not by tinkering with police powers or overuse of incarceration.

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    Epidemic of violence and incarceration for young black males is not inevitable but preventable

    Everyone knows that the USA has the highest rates of incarceration in the world. But not everyone knows that among affluent democracies, it also has the worst rates per capita for young men killed in homicides, traffic fatalities and drug related deaths. It is not just the war on drugs that has failed but the war on street violence and traffic safety.

    This new book analyses the criminological knowledge amassed in the last 30 years to identify concrete actions for politicians for the next five years. Politicians could cut violence by 50% or more, saving $300 billion in harm to victims. If politicians stopped overusing incarceration and reduced expenditures on actions by police, courts and corrections because there is less crime, they would save taxpayers $50 billion or more.

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    • Rights for Victims of Crime:  Rebalancing Justice
    • Smarter Crime Control: A Guide to a Safer Future for Citizens, Communities, and Politicians

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