This introductory section to this special issue of Ghana Journal of Geography on is the extent to which crime influence poverty and vis-à-vis. .. Attempts to explain the relationship between crime and economic conditions. About 10 years ago, Mike Schouten was in a motorcycle accident that would start his life on a path that included drugs, prison and, now, living. The effects that poverty has on crime can be explained in multiple ways. But a mental illness isn't the only link that there is between poverty and crime.
Messenger Today, for a substantial minority of to year-olds, to be young is to be workless, poorly paid or just plain poor.
But despite economic and other hardships this young generation appears not to have been pushed into crime. Those aged 16 to 24 experienced the highest unemployment rates and the highest increase in unemployment. More than one in five of those able to work did not have a job in And almost a third of to year olds lived in poverty, compared with one in five to year-olds.
The same young group is significantly more likely than older groups to be stopped and searched by the police. And they are the most frequent victims of violence and sexual violence. Young people, poverty and crime But the report offers no data to suggest that they are also committing more crimes.
Not only does the report find no evidence of this: According to the Youth Justice Board, the number of those aged up to years-old who were sentenced almost halved from over 90, to less than 50,step-by-step, year-by-year, over exactly the same period covered in the EHRC report.
Understanding the relationship between being without work or living in poverty and crime has been the focus of a century of research. The economic causes of crime thesis is strongly contestedand the extremes of poverty and unemployment in the EHRC report are a powerful empirical stress test of its credibility. If either extreme were prone to triggering crime, it would have done so over this period.
Not only did this not occur: To supporters of the thesis and some agnostics this is a paradox. More unemployment and poverty coincided with less crime. If an individual is struggling with an untreated mental illness, then it is difficult for them to hold down an employment opportunity.
Without a job, it is difficult to find money to meet basic needs. A lack of resources also creates inferior educational opportunities for households in poverty, some actual and some admittedly perceived.
Yet the perception of a lack of education is enough for individuals in poverty to create self-fulfilling prophecies regarding their future.
How Poverty Influences Crime Rates | santemontreal.info
People feel the need to fight for themselves. This leads to the creation of gangs and gang affiliation. Then the cycle continues to perpetuate itself again and again. Crime is simply a means to an end. And often the prize of a successful crime outweighs the risk of being caught, which further increases the crime rate in areas of poverty.
In a free-market society, a common belief regarding poverty is that each person is responsible for their own circumstances. It is true that one of the risk factors for drug use is poverty. The same is true for alcoholism.
Poverty and Crime - Oxford Handbooks
Yet the stereotype is that the risk factor not only applies to everyone in poverty, but that everyone is struggling with some form of addiction. If they could only get a job, they would be fine. And since drug use and public alcohol use is often illegal, these activities then contribute to the local crime rate.
In reality, the problem comes back to the stresses that occur when a household or individual is living in poverty. Not being able to have a basic need met, like knowing when your next meal will be or what it will be, can lead people to a breaking point. They seek out any relief that they can find.
Many times, that relief ends up being in a bottle or a needle. Stress relief also involves risky decisions to alleviate, if but for a moment, what poverty is placing upon an individual.
How Poverty Influences Crime Rates
That brief monetary reward is enough to purchase another fix that can help someone forget where they are. Then they repeat the behavior because the reward of forgetting is worth the risk of future health problems or getting caught. Greater Socioeconomic Gaps Also Encourage Greater Crime Setting all stereotypes aside, poverty influences crime rates because at its core, it highlights and reinforces the differences between the wealthy class and those who are poor.
The greater the gap happens to be, then the greater the benefits are to a thief to use that wealth in some way to their own advantage. This socioeconomic gap is seen in many different ways in our society today. Children who come from homes in poverty are more likely to be expelled from school or to have a police record than a child who makes the same choices as the poor child, but has more overall wealth.
Societies that have age gaps are also prone to more crime when poverty is a factor in the community. This is because of the number of possessions that elderly households are perceived to have, along with the natural vulnerability which comes with age.
Communities which have a higher percentage of inhabitants that are under the age of 25 may also lead to higher crime rates, especially if there are large socioeconomic gaps between different households of that age group. It is these differences which also encourage a higher overall crime rate in minority populations in the United States.
Many minority households live in urban areas and may have built-in struggles with poverty for multiple generations. Yet socioeconomic gaps also create the potential for crime within communities that are struggling with poverty. These gaps are just not always associated with money.
Business owners may take advantage of the desperation of poverty and offer jobs with wages well below legal limits. There are even precedents of having local law enforcement officials extorting money from those who are in poverty, which then creates a lack of functional restraint on the crime that exists in these areas. A World Where Not All Crimes Are Created or Treated Equally During a year period of economic difficulty which started in Europe inthere was a rise in unemployment in uneducated youth and a rise of theft and violence that rose at the same time.
This led to an effort to create more educational opportunities, as multiple studies have shown that higher educational levels lead to lower overall violent crime. In fact, other forms of crime, such as corruption, are more likely in the wealthier classes. This means our focus on poverty tends to be on the amount of violent crime that is produced by low-income communities.
So why is there more violence in low-income areas?
It is because there is less of a safety net that is present for those with few or no resources to rely upon. The fight-or-flight mechanism is initiated and when it comes to self-preservation, most people are going to fight for themselves and their loved ones.
If that means violence is required to secure needed resources, then so be it. Resources must be provided to those in poverty so that basic needs can be met, including any treatment that may be required for mental illness or addiction. Those in poverty must receive some level of consistent protection to make sure they do not have what little resources they have become stolen from them by others.
And, for the most part, society agrees with these two points.