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Making Alberta Communities Safer The Challenges of Sustainability Crystal Hincks Impact & Evaluation Research Services Prof. John Winterdyk Dept. of Justice.

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Presentation on theme: "Making Alberta Communities Safer The Challenges of Sustainability Crystal Hincks Impact & Evaluation Research Services Prof. John Winterdyk Dept. of Justice."— Presentation transcript:

1 Making Alberta Communities Safer The Challenges of Sustainability Crystal Hincks Impact & Evaluation Research Services Prof. John Winterdyk Dept. of Justice Studies, Mount Royal University

2 Overview Crime Prevention Alberta’s Crime Prevention Framework Safe Communities Innovation Fund Lessons Learned from Evaluations Addressing Sustainability

3 Crime Prevention Crime prevention refers to the reduction of future risks of crime through actions, initiatives or policies Accomplished through three main actions: ▫ Traditional Methods  Law enforcement, courts, corrections ▫ Situational Methods  Security precautions, environmental design ▫ Social Development Methods  Targeting of at-risk groups

4 Risk and Protective Factors RISK FACTORS Anything, including personal behaviours or environmental conditions, that increases the likelihood of criminal involvement ▫ Substance abuse ▫ Mental health issues ▫ Low literacy ▫ Witnesses or experiencing violence ▫ Unemployment ▫ Neighbourhood crime ▫ Family dysfunction ▫ Early anti-social behaviour PROTECTIVE FACTORS A positive influence that can reduce the risk of criminality and improve the lives and safety of individuals ▫ Success at school ▫ Positive parenting ▫ Adult role models ▫ Strong social supports ▫ Steady employment ▫ Stable housing ▫ Access to health, social, recreational and cultural services

5 Social Development

6 International Successes United Kingdom ▫ 10 hours of activity to 50 of the most at-risk youth ▫ Reduced youth arrests by 65%, expulsions by 30% United States ▫ Incentives for high school completion for youth ▫ Decreased arrests by 72% Canada ▫ Home visits to at-risk mothers- parenting skills taught ▫ Decreased CFS interventions from 25% to 2.3% ▫ Reduced youth arrests by 67%

7 Alberta’s Crime Prevention Strategy Crime Reduction and Safe Communities Task Force ▫ Create a comprehensive, long-term provincial crime prevention strategy ▫ Led by 9 partnering ministries, community partners, and stakeholders  Goals:  Shift policy focus from enforcement to prevention  Collaboration and integration among agencies  Align appropriate programs, services, and funding  Engage communities and stakeholders  Establish Alberta as a leader in crime prevention

8 $60 million dollars 88 pilot projects province-wide Various levels of crime prevention 3 year mandate Primary Universal Prevention Entire populations Secondary Targeted Prevention High-risk subgroups Tertiary Indicated Prevention High-risk individuals

9 Safe Communities Innovation Fund (SCIF) $60 million dollars 88 pilot projects province-wide Various levels of crime prevention At-risk youth and at-risk families Addictions and mental health Community engagement Aboriginal focused Family violence Sexual violence Offender needs At-risk students Sex-trade workers Homeless populations Gang interventions Community crisis response

10 Assessing the Framework Evaluation ▫ Measuring outcomes Inconsistencies in evaluation strategies ▫ Internal/external agencies Methodologies ▫ Social Return on Investment (SROI)  Cost-benefit ratio

11 Social Return on Investment (SROI) PROS Monetizing social impact Illustrating cost savings Highlighting success Future funding CONS The ratio itself Methodology Proxy accuracy Comparison of programs

12 Challenges of Implementation Poor implementation ▫ Changing program managers ▫ Inaccurate budgeting Inconsistent evaluation strategies ▫ Little to no preparation ▫ Uneducated re: methods Inappropriate utilization of SROI ▫ Sustainable funding Failed partnerships ▫ Loss of funding ▫ Changes in mandates

13 SCIF Today Recent budget cuts SafeCom still afloat  Initiatives gone  Is it working? Sustainable funding? ▫ Bridge funding Death by pilot project ▫ Big Brother Impacts ▫ Discontinuation of services ▫ Restart costs ▫ Loss of services to clients

14 Future of Alberta’s Framework Continuation of initiatives Suspension of pilot projects Future budgets Partnerships Change in government=unpredictable future Government buy-in

15 Thank you! C. Hincks: J. Winteredyk


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