Magazine article The Futurist

Six Safer Cities

Magazine article The Futurist

Six Safer Cities

Article excerpt

Crime-prevention programs get results.

Six U.S. cities have significantly lowered their crime rates in recent years, according to a study published by the National Crime Prevention Council.

The top crime-fighting cities are Boston, Fort Worth, Denver, New York, Hartford, and San Diego. From 1986 to 1996, each of the six cities reduced the level of crime reported to the police by rates ranging from 8% to 47%. A blend of crime prevention, intervention, and community involvement characterizes the cities' success, according to the study, Six Safer Cities: On the Crest of the Crime Prevention Wave.

"These cities and others like them represent a major leading-edge trend in crime prevention. They exemplify the fact that crime prevention is everyone's business, not just the job of law enforcement," says John A. Calhoun, executive director of the National Crime Prevention Council.

The city government of Fort Worth, Texas, cut its rate of violent crime and property crime by introducing a community policing program called Code Blue. Part of the program includes an aggressive citizen patrol. After completing a 12-hour training session at the Fort Worth Police Academy, groups of volunteers patrol their neighborhoods and report suspicious activity directly to police officers by radio. The program, which has over 3,700 volunteers working in 167 neighborhoods, has been especially effective in reducing thefts and burglaries.

Intervention is another important facet of the cities' crime-fighting campaigns. …

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