Neighborhood Watch Feels Good but Does Little

May 16, 2008

According to a recent study, neighborhood watch committees make members feel more secure, and improve neighborhood cooperation and relationships.

But they don’t actually reduce crime. The growth of these committees, which now number roughly 5,000, has been rapid over the last several years, as communities have grappled with a crime wave.

But the study, commissioned by Vice President Laura Chinchilla to evaluate the 10-year-old program, which requires watch groups to be registered with the Public Security Ministry, is skeptical of the program’s impact.

“If we abide by the statistical trends regarding criminal behavior in Costa Rica and especially those that use violence against people or property, the inevitable conclusion is that the neighborhood watch program has had little importance,” states part of the 213-page final report.

“But in general terms, even though the program doesn’t demonstrate a positive impact in decreasing crime, in specific terms, it reduces the feeling of insecurity in neighborhoods.”

National Police Captain Swamy Flores, second in command of the program, disagreed somewhat with the study’s findings.

“There is a decrease in crime in the areas where the committees operate, but what happens is they push the crime to other areas,” he said.

 

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Pic of the Day: Costa Rica’s Isla Nublar (aka Cocos Island)
Pic of the Day
81 views
Pic of the Day
81 views

Pic of the Day: Costa Rica’s Isla Nublar (aka Cocos Island)

Alejandro Zúñiga - April 18, 2019

Isla Nublar, the setting for much of the "Jurassic Park" series, is unfortunately not a real Costa Rican island. Cocos…

Costa Rica holds Maduro regime responsible for diplomat’s safety
Costa Rica
12 views
Costa Rica
12 views

Costa Rica holds Maduro regime responsible for diplomat’s safety

AFP and The Tico Times - April 18, 2019

The Costa Rican Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that it places responsibility with the Venezuelan government of Nicolás Maduro for…

Venezuela withdraws diplomatic credential from Costa Rican diplomat
Latin America
29 views
Latin America
29 views

Venezuela withdraws diplomatic credential from Costa Rican diplomat

AFP and The Tico Times - April 17, 2019

Venezuela withdrew the diplomatic credential from the Costa Rican chargé d'affaires on Tuesday in retaliation for the country’s acceptance of…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!