CRIME PREVENTION METHODS 5
Therising cases of crime have been a major source of concern in thecontemporary human society. Indeed, crime has pervaded almost everyaspect of the contemporary human society and taken almost everyimaginable form. This has been worsened by the advent of variedtechnological innovations such as the internet, which have allowedfor the conduction of criminal activities from remote locations.Questions have emerged about the most appropriate and effectivetechniques for preventing crime or at least lowering its rates bothin the short term and the long term. Of particular interest is therole that youths and children play both as perpetrators and victimsof crime in the contemporary human society. This is the key issue inthe article “CrimePrevention and Community Safety: A Conceptual Overview”by Michel Vallee.
Inthe article, the author examines the wide range of factors thatinfluence public debate in Canada regarding issues pertaining tovictimization and crime especially with regard to youth and childrenas victims and perpetrators. Vallee focuses particularly on differentapproaches to crime prevention and explores some of the fundamentalelements pertaining to an all-inclusive crime prevention strategy(Vallée, 2010). He states that the effectiveness and meaningfulnessof such a strategy is dependent on its taking up of a community-basedsocial development approach.
Thisarticle acknowledges that a wide range of public opinion polls andresearch literature have underlined the crucial nature of addressingyouth and children experiences both as perpetrators and victims ofcrime. Indeed, studies show that there is a persistent perception byCanadians that as much as the rates of crime are increasing, crimeinvolving youths and children is increasing at a more dramatic ratethan other crimes (Vallée, 2010). This is especially the case forproperty and violent crimes alongside school-based violence.
Youthsand children in crime prevention
Further,the attention on youths and children has gone beyond their beingvictims and perpetrators with increased focus being on their role incrime prevention. Studies have shown that children and youths werefundamental program beneficiaries, with most programs involvingschools or police in recreational, educational and mentoringactivities targeting the two groups. A large number of theseprograms had a social development orientation, with police being thekey participants (Vallée, 2010).
Onthe same note, a large number of individuals favor crime preventionthrough the provision of recreational, training and rehabilitationprogram to youth who stand a high risk of offending. This appearsmore favorable than trying to prevent the youths from committingcrimes via increased law enforcement techniques such as toughersentences. For a large number of these programs the fundamentalpremise revolves around the dominant stereotype where children andyouth are seen as villains and victims (Vallée, 2010). Children areseen as passive and innocent victims in need of nurturing andguidance, on one hand, while also being portrayed as potentiallycriminal and dangerous actors who need control and punishment. It isnoted that the image of children as victims is based on theperception that the youth and children are in need of protection andguidance from the varied risks that come with adult life. Indeed,they are seen as not fully developed in which case they present apotential for rehabilitation and successful socialization (Vallée,2010). It rides on the notion that youth and children may beeducated, as well as made aware of the likely problems pertaining tounsafe sexual activities, drugs and crime. In essence, mentorshipprograms, educational and recreational programs may be designed so asto encourage the establishment and development of pro-socialbehavioral patterns in young individuals.
Howwould these programs work?
Intargeting the youth in crime prevention, the use of an approach thatis in favor of getting youths involved in positive activities likedrug rehabilitation and training is seen as considerably effective(Vallée, 2010). Proactive solutions that address crime are favoredincluding increased early childhood intervention, youth recreationalactivities, parenting programs, as well as public education programs.These may be offered as a combination or as a single and isolatedprogram.
Howis the effectiveness of the programs in crime prevention to bemeasured?
Theaspects of effective strategies of crime prevention necessitate aproper definition of crime prevention. Nevertheless, “communitysafety” and “crime prevention are often subsumed. In thedevelopment of a prevention blueprint, it is imperative that thecrime problem is defined from the community, society and victims’perspective (Vallée, 2010). Further, the appropriate interventionlevel must be decided, as well as the right point or basis ofintervention.
Whatare the fundamental categories of crime prevention strategies?
Numerouscategories and descriptions of crime prevention approaches andstrategies have been put forward. The four key strategies of crimeprevention include situational crime prevention, community crimeprevention, developmental crime prevention and crime prevention viasocial development. All these strategies come with distinctive orunique strengths and weaknesses, with their applicability beingdetermined by the specific situations or even the community andsociety within which they are applied.
Vallée,M (2010). Crime prevention and community safety: a conceptualoverview. InternationalJournal of Child, Youth and Family Studies.Vol. 1. No. 1