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CRM2310 (78)
Lecture

Community Intervention in Criminology lecture notes up to January 29th, 2014

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Department
Criminology
Course
CRM2310
Professor
Kate Fletcher
Semester
Winter

Description
CRM2310- Community Intervention January 8, 2014 Section #1: Why Community Intervention? • Why do we feel the community is such an appropriate site/space for dealing with crime as a social problem? What is so good about community? • Community is often times used for the reason why crime exists. Community is both the reason for crime and fixing community is thought to be the way we can deal with crime the most effectively • Either mental illness or inherently bad. Explanation lies within the perpetrator • Community interventions say that this is not the case, criminals are influenced by the place of which they live and the people they associate with. Reasons for crime lay within the community • Three umbrella explanations: • (1) Community lost: crime exists because community is lost. • (2) Community is saved. Community still exists. It is the explanation for crime but it hasn’t disappeared. Values of those communities are criminal ones. Communities favor criminality • (3) Community Liberated/transformed: liberated from geographical constraints. Community has transformed, people no longer looking for spiritual connection by knowing their neighbors • Accept that community is something that is valuable Intervention • Conscious, planned, concerted action  alleviate, eliminate social problems • Interventions are those actions that are going to attempt to alleviate or eliminate these social problems • Informal/Formal • Enacted by regular average citizens, people who might be volunteering their time. Community groups. • Informal: Ex. Neighborhood watch, MADD (at the beginning), • Formal: the criminal justice system and its players intervene • Associated with more formal agents of social control • Reactive/proactive • Active: dealing with situation after it has occurred • Proactive: seeking to prevent something from happening in the future • Formal initiated by former justice plays tend to be quite reactive in nature. After the fact Crime as Social Problem • Crime is a social problem that is intrinsically connected with other social problems. • Universally relevant • If events are evaluated according to their relevant and potential impact on our daily lives we can see why crime is such an important fact to focus on • No one wants to become victimized. Notice it as a problem that is economically and socially costly • Potentially devastating • Crime becomes something we focus on because we feel we can control it • Crime allows us to feel in control because it is seemingly noticeable and seemingly something we can take action • Devastating when people are victimized by crime or there are high crime rates in certain communities • Affects social fabric • Crime becomes a focal concern • It becomes something we think we know how to deal with • Affects it in profound ways. Come up with quick fix solutions that are difficult to view as tangible solutions Causes of Criminality • A lot of these things can be affected by where people live, come from, who they associate with, how it affects their chances • Parental criminality, poverty, opportunity, stigma, inequality, deteriorated community, racism, child abuse, mental illness, lack of schooling, etc. • Things that are going to intersect with crime Types of Community • Geographical • Focus on specific spaces, community is a container • Defining different communities, the neighborhoods or streets • Ex. Vanier, the glebe • Assumption that everyone in these spaces share something in common (shared interest, opinion, demographics (ethinicity, etc.)) • Becomes problematic because we start to see how the interventions start to break down • Ultimately have more power • Interest • Community as a common reality, shared interests • Elective communities, elect to belong to them. Made a choice • Intentional, elect to belong to them on purpose to advance a common goal you all have based on the shared identity, values • Ex. Church, gangs, campus clubs, fraternities, anonymous (internet), sports, Facebook communities, etc. • Our conception of community has to expand beyond geography • Other communities may be of less interest than the interest communities we belong to • Student commnuity • Attachment • More vague • Ex. Being Canadian: friendly, eh, Tim Hortons, Hockey • People in a country they don’t belong to are part of that community but know they are an outsider. Don’t match the stereotype • There really aren’t huge differences between Canada and America but Canadians feel very attached to the idea that we aren’t Americans and we are Canadian • Makes more sense on a pragmatic level Theorizing Community in Social Life • “Community lost” • Being lost in contemporary society and it’s problematic • This is why we have crime  Wellman (1979) • Urbanization/industrializationdecline in personal association • As we move into the city in order to find work in order to live people find the problem with these big cities that there are too many people to know and there is an increasing anonymity • This increases the chances that people around you will be victimized • Decline in personal association. People don’t know one another, people can’t help on another, may be increasingly unwilling to intervene • We are all strangers • This conception of society is formulated in most theories • Basis for modern criminology Tonnies (1887) • Moving away from the sense of community that would have existed in smaller, rural environments • Community is something that is immediate • Defines relationships with one another in a particular way • Was a certain reliance on other people which profoundly changes when we move into the city where we rely on everyone else for everything else that is done in an anonymous way • Relationship themselves start to change • Gemeinschaft: attempt to discus communities and how they regulate the interpersonal relations between individuals. Relationships themselves change. Relationships to broader society. • Sense of community declines and we start to see problems • Gesellschaft Chicago School • Communities are territories and they have a profound impact on crime • All the different neighborhoods in the city have a symbiotic relationship to one another • Symbiosis: relationship of mutual benefit. Components are dependent on one another • Social ecology: if city operates like any other ecological system the development and operation of communities in the city are patterned. There is an order to them. • Crime is a product of the environment. Lack of social bond, lack of care, etc. • Theory of place. Crime is not a theory about people per say • People commit crime because of the place in which they are located. Place compelling people into crime • Place that is actually going to lead to crime • Crime happens in the transitional zone: recent immigrant groups. Factories, abandoned buildings, renters, graffiti, etc. • Not the people that exist in this place because they eventually leave and don’t take their crime with them. Therefore, it is the place and those component aspects of that neighborhood that compel people to commit crime • Concentric Zone Model: CRM 2301 • Critique: white collar crime, police reports show the places police patrol more, there are more police in the city • Why we should focus on the community as a site for eliminate or ameliorating crime Social disorganization of communities • Residential instability o This is the place that people can afford when they first arrive, not necessarily that these people want to stay. Resident base is not stable. o Don’t want to or have the time to get to know each other • Racial/ethnic heterogeneity o Different people from different places. o Different values and opinions o Barrier of allowing people to get to know one another • Poverty o In this place people are poor and this is why the community is disorganized o Parents need to work more to pay bills and kids are left home alone and they get into trouble • Impersonal • Transitory Social ties are deteriorating • Segmented • This is because we are losing community • Our social ties are increasingly become impersonal (not getting to know anyone), totally utilitarian and instrumental, transitory (a lot of people all the time for brief moments), and segmented (fractions of time and not the same people all the time) • This leads to crime. How do we get sense of community back? • Live in a world where this can’t come back. Don’t have a sense on communitalism Community as Networks • Social networks  relationships (ties: strong and weak) o Strong: close friends, close neighbors, family o Weak ties: no judgment on the value. Relationships with people that aren’t necessarily intimate. Friends only at school, teacher with letter of recommendation. People that you won’t share inner most thoughts with. • Builds sense of self • Navigate demands of everyday • We need both these kind of ties • Without both in a community. They are not going to be effective communities, probably will have crime existing • Community saved” • Saved in different ways than in the past. Community still exists but in different forms • Community still exists and those conceptions of togetherness needs to flourish • Became accepted or orthodox view within academic settings in late 50’s- late 60’s • Neighborhood systems of support and sociability persist • Local identification • People identify with these values, ways of life, types of behavior • Focus on ethnographic work on research of neighborhoods • Sub cultural theorists: social ties exist. They might be ties that get people into trouble but they exist • Subcultures exist: where people feel connected. • Community liberated”  community as being transformed • Needs to be liberated from geography and territory • Community itself is transforming • People are more attached to interest and virtual community • Nature of togetherness is changing • Increase in suburbanization/technological change  non-spatial communities • Moving from the city to suburbs now • Ex. Detroit (middle class freight) • People don’t live down town • Leads us to think about how people are forming the attachment/interest communities that are not based on geography • Technology and suburban are allowing for this • Not based in territory • Access to the internet is becoming relatively easier • All of this is not terrible but it is changing the nature of our relationships to one another • Making our community something that is not based in conventional space • Public vs. private spheres • Reconfiguring what constitutes the private sphere (home) and the public sphere • This has some ramifications for what kind of behaviors we are willing to tolerate especially in public space which is increasingly becoming private space Rethinking Community Bauman (2001) • Mobile togetherness ( streets, parks) • Stationary togetherness (bus stops, campus stops, subway, lines) • Temporal togetherness (work, classroom) functioning together • Manifest togetherness (concert, sporting event) experiencing together • Postulated togetherness (Facebook, chat group) being together in a virtual environment • Community is becoming something that is increasingly sought so we look for it more despite the fact we want to communicate in conventional old ways less and less • We experience togetherness in social spaces • Losing the old ways of being together • If virtuality becomes the only means of togetherness then we feel lost • Community is important in some way. Social ties are important for instrumental and symbolic reasons Community transformed • less reliance on neighborhoods -> Psychological support cultural enrichment spiritual nourishment • no longer necessary need to know our neighbor • Not necessary do things with people we have connection with • Site to realize common values in support of social goods • Social goods: public safety, natural trust, engage people so they belong to society , relatively functional, to look and to fix when crime exist. • Not necessary focus on individual explanation of crime • Looking at explanation of crime in community itself. • Solve all the problems of crime by engaged or fixing the community Importance of Community “Neighborhood effects” • Local service quality • Schools, churches, community health services, day care, retail, etc. • Build individual quality of life • This will also impact job access • Shared norms/value • These are the things that make you feel secure in day-to-day life • Just because the neighborhood is filled with low income families doesn’t mean they have high social solidarity • When people feel connected they might feel they can intervene in certain social situations • Sense of community, feeling of connectedness • Peer influences • Big impact on youth being criminally involved • Youth will model perspectives and values of their peer group • Youth culture might be characterized by risky behavior that encourages criminal behavior • Atmosphere of the community will have an impact on the types of youth behaviors that are tolerated and not tolerated • Crime and violence • Crime is a social problem • Existence of crime in the community of which you reside will have a big impact on your quality of life • Victimization: chances of being victimized is higher in this certain community • Stress of potentially becoming a victim all the time is going to have an impact on your quality of life • Community is important when we talk about attacking crime • Children are disproportionately impacted because they are directly impacted by the youth in their neighborhood (scared of being victimized) and the indirect impact that all of this has on adults in their life. Adults who look after you • Job access • Nothing in your neighborhood where will you find a job • Have to travel outside your community to find a job • Chicago school: when you have a community where people are constantly moving in and out of it, it is conceptualized as a more unorganized community because of a lack of time to build up relationships. No social capital. • If you can’t find a job where you reside you will have to leave the community The Importance of Communities • Human capital  individual persona resources: building block of community well being. • This is an individual quality housed within individual people. Still important in how functional communities are. • Personal resources dictate how well you will compete in the market place. People of high levels of human capital have personal talents and attributes/qualities that allow them to further their own interests. • Able to mobilize and use to further their own interests. Allows you to compete in the market place • This is stuff that is housed within you • Something that people have high levels of in wealthy communities. Not to say that in less wealthy communities they won’t have these connections but it will be harder for them • Examples: education, confidence, social adeptness, things society favors, extrovertedness, ability to make friends • Social networks  networks or relationships (ties: strong/weak) • Outside of human capital • Tend to rely on social networks to compete for goods and services that we wouldn’t be able to attain through human capital alone • We have to rely on our relationships to others at times in order to get things that will allow us to have a good quality of life • Social networks are those relationships that exist for you as an individual in places where you live, work and play • The tie is going to be the bond that we feel toward other members of our network • Weak: means we do not have a strong intimate connection with that network/person. Ex: school and work friends- people you won’t necessarily go to drinks with but they can help you with notes and you can study with. Doesn’t mean they are bad. • The more weak ties we have within networks the better. We can call on these people to help us • Strong: these are our intimate connections. Family, close friend networks. Interpersonal network. These are still good ties • Social capital  web of respect/trust. Social capital is comprised of networks, norms and trust that facilitate coordination and cooperation for mutual benefit • If you have lots of strong and weak ties. You have lots of social networks then you will have high levels of social capital because you can work with those individuals to make things happen for yourself and they will be able to do the same • Underlining structure of your interpersonal relationships/networks that will dictate your level of social capital. • You will be able to use those ties to your benefit • Located in social organization  associational ties local institutions • Individuals end up being connected to one another through these respectful trusting networks to make your quality of life better and social life better • Private and public good • Example: foot patrol- potential employer tells you to get more volunteering on your resume. Foot patrol is a public good which will help other people but will also benefit you. • This is desirable for everyone to have high levels of social capital • Facilitates action- it is a resource. Huge impact on the amount of crime in certain places • Very existence means there is a level of solidarity among the people who live there • Communities that are populated by people who are able to mobilize their personal ties to help themselves are communities that will be more socially organized and less likely to have problems with crime • Institutions within a neighborhood are a social embodiment of social networks and social capital. Illustrates that a community has those things otherwise it wouldn’t exist Domains of Social Capital • These are the characteristics communities have when there are high levels of social capital • This is where social capital resides. If your community is characterized with these three things: • Tolerance • Belonging • Willing to tolerate social difference (only goes so far) • Reciprocity (reciprocal relationships) • Levels of support amongst people. Willing to do things for each other • Altruism: willing to be kind and do things without wanting something in return • Trust (high levels) • Reliability: fairly reliable • Co-operation: past cooperation within the social network • Regardless of whether you know them well or not • Collective efficacy  can work together as a group, take action on specific goals, and solve collective problems. • Communities with high levels of human capital, dense complex social networks and high levels of social capital will be able to have a higher collective efficacy • Self-interest tied to collective interest (altruism). Everyone doing well in the group • Willing to work together to solve common problems • People need to have time and personal resources that allow them to work together with others to solve social problems • Collective efficacy not going to exist in community where people are not connected to their neighbors and don’t have time • Something that you want to mobilize but not necessarily always going to exist even with a wealthy community we don’t always see this because sometimes some of those people work way too much they don’t have the time. Might think they can pay someone else to do it • Sometimes wealth insulates you from others • These are things that are valuable within communities How does it lead to crime? • Informal social control private and parochial • Capacity for a community to realize common values that the residents share and maintain effective social controls for people who go against common values • Not saying that it is good to have communities where people repress everything else to make every one conform. • Most of us share certain common core values. (ex: safety, desire for work/money/meaning) • Gangs- criminal networks, but they work together for mutual benefit • Informal mechanisms: gossiping/shunning- doesn’t encourage trust and we don’t want people to say these things about us. Very effective • Formal mechanisms: formally introduced at the community level. Voluntary groups. Ex: One parent looking after all the youth on their block after school until the rest of the parents get home • Private- that which is exercised by your strong ties. Potent ability to change your behavior. Informal mechanisms usually • Parochial- that which is exercised by your weak ties. Influence of weak ties over your behavior. Trying to get you to conform to conventional expectations and standards • People start to exercise their own form of policing, without using actual police, in their neighborhood Community’s Role in Crime • Crime = breakdown of community life. Communities themselves are not able in private or parochial ways to exercises efficient informal social control • Lack of informal social control  crime  lack of social capital and lack of collective efficacy • Not working together to solve problems because there is no social capital (tolerance, reciprocracy and trust) • Community as potential solution to crime • When community breaks down crime emerges • Potential problematic explanation Crime and “Community” • Community disorganization  crime community disorganization  crime and so on • Tautological reasoning: circle reasoning • Lack of community that creates crime and community is the solution to crime • Cause or effect? What comes first? Is community disorganization the cause of crime or are communities disorganized because crimes already exist? Restoring Order • The way communities are set up are integral in influencing the relationships in positive ways • Strangeness and strangers • How do you foster community in diverse environments? • Strangers = danger • Most likely to be victimized by someone you know in the private sphere • Need to embrace strangers and strangeness • Restoration of order and civility  policing does not equal police • We need to exercise informal social control • Police ourselves rather than rely on police • Natural surveillance • Have to be out and about in the public sphere in order to exercise a certain amount of natural surveillance • More likely to intervene if things go wrong January 15, 2014 *Little story about human capital’s impact on social networks and how social network ties leads to higher levels of social capital which leads to communities being able to have a high collective efficacy. Everyone is able to work together and therefore there is a high level of informal social control which is where crime plays in. High levels of informal social control leads to less crime.* EXAM: Explain how social capital directly impacts a community’s collective efficacy. Community Approaches to Crime • Citizens as “coproducers” of safety  state/formal agents • Community is so important on how we approach crime because the people who live in these places have a certain amount of expertise. Theses residents are experts on the problems that they have to deal with in their community • State agents have to work together with the citizens to fix the problems within the community • Need to be coproducers of safety • “Top-down” • How it is normally done • Most of the driving force to fix communities come from the government and their agents • Problem is typically that it is not very responsive to the community and how they might define the problem and what they might see to be the best solution • Government and citizens aren’t usually on the same page because they each have different goals • Government goals: make the entire country better not just small areas because they have a huge amount to deal with. Focused on the stats. *Become preoccupied with immediate measurable outcomes. Intervening at the level of community is not immediate. They need to justify spending tax payers’ dollars. • Citizens’ goals: a better community a happy place to live. Focus on the community level. • Government is going to conceptualize the problem differently than the community because of the intervening principles • “Bottom-up” • Communities should be able to produce the resources they need and work towards fixing their problems themselves • Communities themselves are going to initiate the types of interventions they need being able to mobilize the police. • Ex. Need advice from the police on how to deal with this, need to be able to access money from the government • Community as resource  residents possess knowledge “expertise about problem/solution • Community is a resource that government and police need to tap into • Residents understand what is happening around them and might conceptualize the problems in a completely different way than people coming in from the outside and they will have different solutions as well • Community as an abstract idea represents a policy vehicle (way to think about crime and criminality) because it has broad appeal, generates positive associations, permits multiples interpretations (also becomes it’s down fall), and allows representatives of different groups to claim it as their own • These are the things that also plague these types of interventions “Community” in Urban Spaces • How do you cultivate this sense of community with a lot of different people in one space with a lot of different ideas? Why Community … Really? Why alternative motivation? • Result of “overburdened state”  loss of confidence • Has to do too much for us, too many roles and responsibilities and can’t really fill them efficiently • We start to lose confidence in them to protect us or take care of us • Government is not saying they can’t do it alone, they need to coproduce safety • State wants to take a step back and force people to start looking after themselves • Re-legitimizing state-public relationship through community • Loss of confidence can re-negotiate and re-legitimate their relationship with us • Shift in responsibility (“responsibilization”) • Communities end up having to carry the responsibility of dealing with their own problems on their shoulders • The promises made in the past they change and don’t exist anymore • Have to take responsibility the state used to take for us • Often being asked to take responsibility for things you might not be capable of being responsible for • Ex: government is not going to have any sort of pool of money from which people can draw when they retired • Implication of citizens = wider social control • Looks like we are working more independently from the state but we are not • When mechanisms put in place don’t work, you are blameworthy. You are a blameworthy agent of your own misfortune because you are coproducing safety • Your safety is now in your hands and should the techniques you have to ward this protect fail means you either didn’t try hard enough, weren’t cautious, didn’t buy the right things • Alternative motivation for an emphasis on community intervention allows for individuals and communities to be responsibilized in dealing with crime • Community has been appropriated to fill the vacuum when the boundaries have been re- drawn up Contemporary Community We think about community in these two ways: • Commodity • Ad Hoc communities: not formalized or organized • Community is the thing that is bought and sold • Commodity: Certain feelings and images which are associated with that place that people want to experience. And higher people advertise on that. Something that is bought and sold • Ex: Las Vegas- gambling, casinos, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, get away with a lot. • Not all residents of these places are necessarily representative of the community • Community itself is a commodity, people with power are trying to sell certain images • Community is a place that is bought and sold • Niche of consumption • Meant for instant of one off consumption • Go to these places to consume goods and services • Communities that are organized around the stuff you can buy. Tangible goods or services • Impact on who is considered to be part of the community. Individuals must be able to spend money to belong • Public spaces are increasingly planned that is maintained and owned by private individuals who have the power to say what is allowed and what isn’t • Different objective and different rules • Community is a place where you buy and sell things • Example: Santana Row- place where people consume goods and services • Falls under community liberated because it doesn’t follow the normal community • Conceptualize community as something that is not necessarily whole represented as a niche • Moving to gated communities • Communities become commodified because of the thought about what communities should be • Must possess money to be a part of these commodified communities. If you don’t look like you can consume then you will be excluded • These people who are excluded often become criminalized. Problematic because you are being criminalized for being poor January 20, 2014 “Public” Space in the Contemporary City • Don’t resemble public spaces we traditionally had • Antithesis of private  constructed as “unsafe” • Unsafe to be in public spaces • Privatization of public spaces • Fuels our desire to privatize public space • Someone owns these places • Increasingly looking at public spaces where we all gather and we conceptualize them as public spaces but if someone owns these spaces
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