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Survey Says...

Department of Criminal Justice releases public safety survey results

Written by Mike Thee
June 22, 2018

Seattle University issued results this week from its third annual Public Safety Survey. Conducted in 2017, the survey garnered more than 6,400 responses, with participants weighing in on public safety issues, perceptions of police, neighborhoods and crime. Findings from the survey will help inform the Seattle Police Department’s Micro-Community Policing Plans (MCPP) initiative, which was launched in 2015. 

MCPP, SU’s report reads, “is based on the notion that public safety can be enhanced and crime can be reduced through collaborative police-community attention to distinctive needs of Seattle neighborhoods with focused crime control, crime prevention and quality of life strategies on neighborhood-specific priorities.” 

The survey was conducted under the auspices of the Department of Criminal Justice’s Criminal Justice Research Center, which collects and analyzes data in collaboration with local, state and federal criminal justice agencies. 

The survey’s findings are broken down by SPD precinct—East, North, South, Southwest and West—and also include city-wide analysis. City-wide, respondents identified as top public safety concerns lack of police capacity; car prowls; residential burglary; property crime; and littering/dumping. Homelessness and traffic issues also surfaced as prominent themes from survey respondents. 

“The Seattle Public Safety Survey data provides an invaluable resource to the City of Seattle and the Seattle Police Department to be able to direct resources to differentially and holistically address issues that matter to Seattle and its neighborhoods,” said Jacqueline Helfgott, professor and chair of the Criminal Justice Department at Seattle University. “Seattle is the only city to have this in-depth annual micro-community measure of community perceptions of public safety that directs police resources based on data on both crime and community perception of crime. We are now in the fourth year of the MCPP, and the annual survey data provides a way to see how we have addressed public safety issues across the city.” 

Click here for more information, including a link to the full report on the results.