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The Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management has been instrumental in collaborating with a number of jurisdictions in experimenting with new problem-solving frameworks to prevent crime. To-date most of these projects have focused on reducing gang and group-involved violence.
Pioneered in Boston these new initiatives have followed a core set of activities to reduce violence. These activities have included a close partnership between researchers and practitioners, and the convening of an inter-agency working group representing a wide range of criminal justice and social service capabilities.
The "pulling levers"-focused deterrence strategy has been a key component of these new prevention strategies. Jurisdictions experimenting with these new strategic approaches have shown promising results in the reduction of violence.
Read more about our strategic crime prevention projects, including StreetSafe Boston, Operation Ceasefire: Boston Gun Project, and Strategic Approaches to Community Safety Initiative (SACSI) below and at left.
For a detailed listing, see Published Findings page
StreetSafe Boston (SSB) is an initiative of The Boston Foundation striving to reduce gang related crime throughout the city of Boston. According to SSB, this program’s mission is to “contribute to a reduction of violence in Boston by focusing interventions on approximately 20 of the City’s most active gangs in neighborhoods disproportionately affected by gang violence.”...
The Boston Gun Project was a problem-oriented policing initiative expressly aimed at taking on a serious, large-scale crime problem - homicide victimization among young people in Boston. Like many large cities in the United States, Boston experienced an epidemic of youth homicides ...
Justice pilot project that follows the Boston Gun Project's strong emphasis on partnerships, knowledge-driven decisionmaking, and ongoing strategic assessment. The project is spearheaded by U.S. Attorneys and has been implemented in five cities...
Baltimore has long suffered from high yearly counts of homicides. During the 1990s, however, Baltimore experienced more than three hundred homicides per year between 1990 and 1997, with a 30-year high peak of 353 homicides in 1993. In 1996 and 1997 Baltimore had the fourth highest homicide rate in the United States among cities with more than 250,000 residents ...
In most communities, sustainable gains in public safety depend on broader efforts at community development, and community development depends just as heavily on public safety. Recognizing just how closely intertwined these two activities are, the Community Safety Initiative (CSI) - formerly the Community Security Initiative - has sought to develop partnerships between police and community development corporations (CDCs) in each of several cities around the country in order to develop a broad program for improving the quality of life in neighborhoods. Arising out of a collaboration among the Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management, the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), and the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), the CSI has offered ...
The ideals of prosecutors who support the development of community prosecution, and the practices they are crafting around the country, share three common features:
Below is an overview of the project, taken as an excerpt from the City of Boston Press Release. More information will be forthcoming as the study progresses:
On April 24, 2014 The Honorable Martin J. Walsh, Mayor of the City of Boston, hosted the first-ever New England Regional Gun Trafficking Summit bringing together mayors, municipal officials, law enforcement, subject matter experts, and community partners to discuss leadership commitments to combat gun trafficking through regional partnerships.
Mayor Walsh also announced that the Program in Criminal Justice (PCJ) will conduct a detailed study on illegal gun trafficking in Boston. The study will be led by Professor Anthony Braga, who has worked for more than 20 years on violent crime issues in Boston. The study is possible through a grant from Everytown for Gun Safety, Fund for a Safer Future, and the Rappaport Institute for Greater Boston.
Braga will work in close partnership with the Boston Police Department and in consultation with the US Attorney’s Office and ATF. He will work in the Boston neighborhoods most affected by gun violence to better understand how criminals, juveniles, and other high-risk people acquire illegal guns on our streets.
The study will use a variety of data and methods to answer questions such as where illegal guns come from and how illegal guns are acquired on Boston’s streets, and is intentionally designed to make concrete policy recommendations on how the City can reduce the flow of illegal guns to high-risk individuals.
A number of legislative, regulatory, enforcement, and community-based interventions will be identified and considered as a result of the study. The Boston study will also provide a roadmap to help other jurisdictions in New England understand the nature of their illegal gun problems. Much of the Boston work will be used to inform a regional approach to shutting down cross-jurisdictional pipelines of drugs and guns. Professor Braga and his team will also be part of this regional effort and will provide analytical guidance to participating cities.
Visiting Scholar Reports on Youth Crime, Violence, and Disorder
John Paterson,a Visiting Fellow with the PCJ and Fulbright Police Research Award recipient, focused his research on identifying partnership approaches to tackling youth crime, violence, and disorder.
In his summary the Chief Inspector of the Strathclyde Police in Scotland explained the project's purpose "was not to add to the academic debate about what causes youth crime and disorder, but rather capture some of the learned thinking and operationally effective activities that have helped to reduce the levels of youth crime and violence in communities. In this regard, it is hoped that as the police service and central / local government bodies develop new ways to work in partnership with the many third sector organizations operating throughout the country, some of the aforementioned innovative practices and ideas can be replicated in Scotland and perhaps other places across the United Kingdom."