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Butler, M. & Cunningham, P. (2010) Fear of Crime in Ireland: Understanding its Origins and Consequences. In P. Knepper (eds) International Handbook of Victimology. Florida: Taylor & Francis Ltd.

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Butler, M. & Cunningham, P. (2010) Fear of Crime in Ireland: Understanding its Origins and Consequences. In P. Knepper (eds) International Handbook of Victimology. Florida: Taylor & Francis Ltd.
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  Queen's University Belfast - Research Portal Fear of Crime in the Republic of Ireland: Understanding itsOrigins and Consequences Butler, M., & Cunningham, P. (2010). Fear of Crime in the Republic of Ireland: Understanding its Origins andConsequences. In S. G. Shoham, P. Knepper, & M. Kett (Eds.), International Handbook of Victimology. (pp. 429-457). Florida: Taylor and Francis. 10.1201/EBK1420085471-c16 Published in: International Handbook of Victimology Document Version: Author final version (often known as postprint) Link: Link to publication record in Queen's University Belfast Research Portal Publisher rights Copyright 2010 CRC Press.This is an accepted manuscript of a book chapter published in International Handbook of Victimology on 23/02/2010, available online:https://www.crcpress.com/International-Handbook-of-Victimology/Shoham-Knepper-Kett/9781420085471 General rights Copyright for the publications made accessible via the Queen's University Belfast Research Portal is retained by the author(s) and / or othercopyright owners and it is a condition of accessing these publications that users recognise and abide by the legal requirements associatedwith these rights. Take down policy The Research Portal is Queen's institutional repository that provides access to Queen's research output. Every effort has been made toensure that content in the Research Portal does not infringe any person's rights, or applicable UK laws. If you discover content in theResearch Portal that you believe breaches copyright or violates any law, please contact openaccess@qub.ac.uk.Download date:26. Feb. 2016  429 16 Fear of Crime in the Republic of Ireland Understanding Its Origins and Consequences MICHELLE BUTLER AND PAUL CUNNINGHAM Contents 16.1 Introduction 43016.2 Defining Fear o Crime 43016.3 Fear o Crime in the Republic o Ireland 43216.3.1 Fear o Crime and Victimization 43316.4 Te Present Study: Purpose and Methodology 43616.4.1 Methodology 43616.4.1.1 Te Statistical Sample 43616.4.1.2 Measurement 43616.4.1.3 Data Analysis 43816.4.2 Fear o Crime and Its Impact on Quality o Lie 43816.4.2.1 Impact on Quality o Lie 43916.4.3 Factors Predicting Fear o Crime and a Reduced Quality o Lie 44016.4.4 Demographic Inormation 44316.4.5 Crime in Local Area 44416.4.6 Experience o Victimization 44516.4.7 Satisaction with An Garda Síochána 44616.5 Discussion 44716.5.1 Previous Experience o Victimization 44716.5.1.1 Personal Vulnerability 44816.5.1.2 Normalization o Crime 45016.5.1.3 Reducing Fear o Crime and Its Impact on Quality o Lie 45116.5.2 Reducing Victimization 45116.5.3 Provision o Services to Victims 452 TAF 85476SHOHAM1 09 0702 C016.indd 429 TAF-85476SHOHAM1-09-0702-C016.indd 429 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM  430 International Handbook of Victimology 16.5.3.1 Supports or Vulnerable Individuals 45216.5.4 Perceptions o Local Crime and Policing 45216.5.5 Further Research 453Reerences 454 16.1 Introduction Although individuals have been concerned about crime or centuries, “ear o crime” is a relatively recent concept. Te expression “ear o crime” first began to appear in American newspapers during the 1930s and was used to explain the public’s reaction to criminal behavior. However, the term  fear of crime  was not used in Europe until the early 1960s. It was during this time that the development o victim surveys and improvements in inormation-gathering technologies made data collection more manageable and the measurement o ear o crime *  possible [see Emsley, 1987; Lee, 2007]. In this chapter, the level o ear o crime in Ireland is explored, as well as its impact on quality o lie. First, the concept o ear o crime is examined beore moving on to discuss how ear o crime became an area o public concern in Ireland. Next, the methods used to assess ear o crime in Ireland are described, and the actors predicting ear o crime and its impact on quality o lie are identified. Last, the potential relationship between victimization and ear o crime is exam-ined, and the implications arising rom the research findings are explored. 16.2 De󿬁ning Fear of Crime Fear o crime is diffi cult to define because it can reer to a range o thoughts, emotions, and belies regarding an individual’s vulnerability and that o his or her loved ones and the wider community [Ferraro, 1995]. For example, ear o crime is usually taken to mean an individual’s ear o becoming a victim o crime [Maxfield, 1984; John Howard Society o Alberta, 1999; Gabriel and Greve, 2003]. However, it can also reer to people’s concern about general crime levels, their belies regarding their risk o victimization and that o their loved ones, as well as an apprehension about the possible consequences o victimization [Warr, 1984; Skogan, 1987; Box, Hale, and Andrews, 1988; Carrach and Mukherjee, 1999]. Tis diversity has resulted in ear o crime * Any measurement of fear of crime depends on individuals accurately acknowledging and reporting their fears. As such, these measurements tend to assess an individual’s reported fear of crime and may not take account of unconscious feelings of fear. For this reason, the use of the term  fear of crime  in this chapter refers to an individual’s acknowl-edged and reported fear of crime. TAF 85476SHOHAM1 09 0702 C016.indd 430 TAF-85476SHOHAM1-09-0702-C016.indd 430 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM  Fear of Crime in the Republic of Ireland 431 being defined as “an emotional response o dread or anxiety to crime or symbols that a person associates with crime” [Ferraro, 1995:4].Tere are many actors that are believed to contribute to a ear o crime [see Ferraro, 1995; Hale, 1996; Lee, 2007]. Tese include personal attributes, previous experience o victimization, characteristics o the environment, and wider social influences such as the media. Personal characteristics, such as age, gender, ethnicity, geographical location, and education, have all been ound to be related to ear o crime [Clemente and Kleiman, 1976; Box et al., 1988; Hough, 1995; Chadee and Ditton, 2003]. Specifically, emales, older adults, ethnic minority groups, and individuals rom urban locations tend to report a greater ear o crime than others [Box et al., 1988; Ferraro, 1995; Hale, 1996].An individual’s perception o crime as a requent occurrence may also result in eelings o ear as individuals believe they are at an increased risk o being victimized [Warr and Stafford, 1983; Ferraro, 1995]. In particular, past experience o being a victim o crime may increase an individual’s perception o being at risk o uture victimization [Skogan, 1987; Box et al., 1988]. However, the relationship between ear o crime and victimization is not always straightorward. For example, while having been a crime victim may increase an individual’s belie o being at risk o urther victimization, it may also reduce the perceived seriousness o being victimized [see Agnew, 1985; Winkel, 1998]. In this way, variations between individuals’ perceptions o the requency and seriousness o criminal behavior may explain differ-ences in their levels o ear.In addition, research indicates that ear o crime can be influenced by characteristics o the environment and wider social processes [Heath and Petraitis, 1987; Ferraro, 1995]. Skogan [1986, 1990] suggests that a location’s reputation or being crime prone depends on the amount o criminal activity in it and on various “signs o crime.” Signs o crime are eatures o the envi-ronment that increase an individual’s perceived risk o victimization [Skogan and Maxfield, 1981; Skogan, 1990]. Broken windows, graffi ti, burned-out houses and/or cars, homelessness, beggars, and “rowdy” youths can act as signs o crime [Wilson, 1968; Wilson and Kelling, 1985; Ferraro, 1995]. Such signs o crime, combined with an area’s reputation or being crime prone, are believed to indirectly influence ear o crime by heightening an individual’s perceived risk o being victimized [LaGrange et al., 1992].Further, wider social processes can also shape an individual’s perceptions o crime, sense o vulnerability, and o the consequences associated with  victimization. For example, a growth in media technologies is believed to have acilitated a greater awareness o crime, as well as a greater awareness o “risk” among the public [Beck, 1992; Furedi, 2002; Lyng, 2005]. Such awareness o being “at risk” is believed to have contributed to a culture o ear that encourages eelings o uncertainty and anxiety among the TAF 85476SHOHAM1 09 0702 C016.indd 431 TAF-85476SHOHAM1-09-0702-C016.indd 431 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM  432 International Handbook of Victimology population [see Furedi, 2002]. As such, ear o crime appears to be located within, and linked to, wider ears about such matters as employment, the amily, security, health, finances, and the state o the government [aylor, 1996; Ewald, 2000; ulloch and Lupton, 2003; Walklate and Mythen, 2008]. Consequently, Hollway and Jefferson [1997] suggest that some individuals may project their ears about wider, more diffi cult to control issues onto crime, as crime appears actionable and potentially controllable. Accordingly, some individuals may report a ear o crime that stems rom wider anxieties and/or eelings o vulnerability rather than their risk o being victimized or their previous experience o victimization. 16.3 Fear of Crime in the Republic of Ireland In Ireland, the past ew decades have seen increasing attention being paid to crime and the impact o crime on Irish citizens. Tis, in turn, has prompted a greater awareness o crime and its effect among the general population [see Kilcommins et al., 2004]. In particular, a combination o actors in the 1980s and mid-1990s provided the catalyst or widespread public anxiety about crime and crime control, which resulted in a greater attentiveness to issues such as ear o crime and its impact on quality o lie.In the early 1980s, Ireland experienced an economic recession that contributed to high levels o unemployment, emigration, and poverty [see Laver et al., 1987]. Te recession, combined with the roubles in Northern Ireland, caused individuals to be more concerned with unemployment, inflation, and Northern Ireland than with domestic crime and crime control, despite increasing crime figures [see Kilcommins et al., 2004]. Tis led some commentators to state that Ireland remained a nation curiously unconcerned by crime despite an unprecedented increase in offi cial crime statistics [O’Donnell and O’Sullivan, 2003].Te majority o the Irish public seemed to remain unconcerned about crime until a series o events in the 1980s and mid-1990s. During the late 1970s and 1980s, Ireland experienced an increase in the number o people using drugs, especially heroin, to such an extent that Dublin (the capital o Ireland) was believed to be experiencing an “opiate epidemic” [see Dean et al., 1985; O’Mahony, 1993]. Offi cial crime statistics indicate that the num-ber o burglaries, robberies, and thefs increased significantly during this period; commentators suggested that these increases were associated with the growing number o drug addicts in Ireland and their need to und their habit [see O’Mahony and Guilmore, 1983; Charleton, 1995]. Tis led to eel-ings o disquiet among those living in urban locations, particularly Dublin, about the harm caused by drug use, as well as the lavish liestyles o criminals involved in supplying drugs [see Kilcommins et al., 2004; O’Donnell, 2007]. TAF 85476SHOHAM1 09 0702 C016.indd 432 TAF-85476SHOHAM1-09-0702-C016.indd 432 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM 8/31/09 10:31:49 AM
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