A quantitative study of Prince Albert’s crime/risk reduction approach to community safety

Murray J. Sawatsky, Rick Ruddell, Nicholas A. Jones

Abstract


Faced with escalating crime rates and increasing demands for services, the Prince Albert Police Service led a mobilization effort to implement a crime/risk reduction strategy called Community Mobilization Prince Albert (CMPA). This study examines the evolution of crime prevention practices from traditional police-based practices that rely on focused enforcement practices, to the emerging risk reduction model, wherein police-led partnerships with community agencies are developing responses to the unmet needs of individuals and families facing acutely elevated risk (AER). These community mobilization strategies have resonated with justice system stakeholders throughout Canada, diffusing throughout the nation in a relatively short period of time. This study examines the outcomes of these crime prevention efforts and their results on reducing crime and social disorder and the associated costs of crime to society, after implementation of CMPA in 2011. In order to evaluate the crime reduction efficacy of this approach, crime rates and the costs of crime were examined prior to the adoption of the mobilization efforts and afterwards. We find a statistically significant decrease in the rates of violent and property crimes after the introduction of the community mobilization approach, and the costs to society of these offences also decreased. Given those findings, a number of implications for policy, practice, and future research are identified.

Keywords


Community mobilization; crime reduction; proactive policing; costs of crime; police calls for service; acutely elevated risk

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ISSN 2371-4298