Tag Archives: USA

Policing in the 21st Century and Smarter Crime Control: What shifts policy to cost effective public safety?

Compared to 50 years ago, health policy has led to much longer life expectancy. Technology has led to a much easier life. But criminal justice policy has only recently been associated with rates of street crime close to those in the 1960´s when the USA had 3 Presidential Commissions on violence. We are also now more aware that intimate partner and sexual violence is much more rampant than debated 50 years ago.

Recent innovations in Canada and evidence based initiatives in the USA suggest that a shift in policy could reduce interpersonal violent crime by 50% or more combined with huge savings in tax expenditures. So what do we know about how to make this shift? To what extent will these innovations and initiatives lead to application of the evidence and so less interpersonal violent crime and greater public safety at less cost? Will they achieve the potential for a 50% reduction in street crime and intimate partner and sexual violence? Will they reduce taxes on crime and justice by $6 billion in Canada and $75 billion in the USA?

The CCA Panel on the Future of Policing Canada in the 21st century emphasized that policing is just one player in reducing interpersonal violence and providing public safety. The book on Smarter Crime Control reviewed the accumulated evidence on cost effective public safety to show that (i) specific policing strategies that are pro-active and in partnerships to be effective and (ii) that many pre-crime prevention investments are proven to be more cost effective in preventing much of violent crime.

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Feel-good crime policy bad for crime victims – remember smokers (post 27)

Unfortunately what ¨feels-good¨ to politicians may not be good for crime victims. It is systematic science that enabled our political leaders to save lives and improve the quality of life for potential smokers.

The UK Cabinet Office has produced an important ¨politician´s guide¨ to using behavioral science to ensure that policies are deliverying results. It calls for testing and learning. To help potential crime victims, we also need governments that invest in applying the knowledge.

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Prevent violence with less beer and fewer handguns (post 26)

¨1.The more beer consumed per capita, the higher the rates of assault per capita – so North American policies on restricting alcohol are better than those in Western Europe;¨
¨2.Rates of handgun ownership correlate highly with increased risk of personal victimization – so European and Canadian policies on restricting availability of handguns are better than those in the USA;¨

Some recent conclusions from prize winning victim advocate who analyzes international data on trends in victimization to identify actions that have reduced violence …

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How to reduce homicide and mass incarceration safely in the world´s prison capital (post 25)

The US State that has the highest rate of incarceration in the world has a rate of murders that exceeds that of Canada, UK and Minnesota by a factor of seven or more!

We know that the over use of mass incarceration and so intolerable State debt came from massive government funding in the past. So smart investment in violence prevention will protect victims from violence, while also reducing State debt by reducing mass incarceration.

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17. US AG Endorses Winning Strategy to Prevent Youth Violence – Smart Enforcement and Prevention

The Attorney General wants to save lives and invest in youth by ¨braiding¨ the support from multiple federal agencies for local partnerships.

His winning framework, made public last week, is a logical and evidence based strategy. It wants to shift crime policy from the expensive ¨only criminal justice¨ reaction to crime. It calls for a wise balance between smart enforcement, risk focused prevention, and rehabilitation.

It is critical because it addresses causes and uses data. Potentially it will reduce harm to crime victims while reinvesting over-expenditures on law enforcement and incarceration. For sustained success, it must invest in making the shift and retool to make prevention as important as reaction.

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