It is significantly safer in New York than it was twenty years ago and one of the most important reasons is an initiative called Business Improvement Districts (BIDs). A Swedish think tank is now trying to spread knowledge about the American success story.
Magnus Lindgren, criminologist and secretary general for the think tank, Tryggare Sverige, believes the debate in Sweden has become entrenched. “The debate is almost only about the need for more police, criminal gangs in deprived areas and jihadists. Sometimes you need to reach a new low watermark before people start thinking in new ways,” he tells DI.
To mimic New York, Swedish authorities need to put more energy into creating attractive physical environments and addressing “life quality crimes” such as vandalism.
Justice Minister Morgan Johansson (S) believes BIDs could be a good method for improving crime prevention, although says efforts need to be adapted to local conditions.
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