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Neighbourhood Characteristics and the Distribution of Crime in Winnipeg
By Robin Fitzgerald, Michael Wisener and Josée Savoie
This research paper explores the spatial distribution of crime and various social, economic and physical neighbourhood characteristics in the City of Winnipeg. Analysis is based on police-reported crime data from the 2001 Incident-based Uniform Crime Reporting Survey (UCR2), the 2001 Census of Population, and City of Winnipeg land-use data.
In general, results support previous research suggesting that crime is not randomly distributed within cities, but is associated with the distribution of other factors related to the population and land-uses of the city. In particular, crime in Winnipeg in 2001 was concentrated in the city centre, representing a relatively small proportion of the total geographic area of the city.
Results point to significant differences in the characteristics of high- and low-crime neighbourhoods. For instance, high-crime neighbourhoods were characterized by reduced access to socio-economic resources, decreased residential stability, increased population density and land-use patterns that may increase opportunity for crime.
After taking into account all other factors, the level of socio-economic disadvantage of the residential population in a neighbourhood was most strongly associated with the highest neighbourhood rates of both violent and property crime.