Chapter

Crime prevention, civil society and communities

David Faulkner and Ros Burnett

in Where Next For Criminal Justice?

Published by Policy Press

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9781847428929
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447305569 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847428929.003.0005
Crime prevention, civil society and communities

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This chapter argues that a successful approach to preventing crime and reducing reoffending, and to providing support for victims, depends not only on the work of the courts and statutory services, but also on the goodwill and effectiveness of civil society. It discusses the role of the voluntary and community sector, the support of communities and the influences of family and other attachments in diverting those at risk, especially young people, from turning to crime; in making sure that victims' concerns are heard and in responding to them; and in supporting vulnerable people such as the families of victims and offenders, those with problems of mental health or addiction, and minorities who are likely to be neglected or overlooked. It explores the concepts of ‘community’, ‘local justice’ and ‘localism’, and the role of the lay magistracy. The government placed a new emphasis on the ‘Big Society’ after the riots in August 2011 as providing the means of reasserting moral values and mending Britain's ‘broken society’; the chapter concludes with some reflections on what might be called a ‘good society’, and on the ‘Big Society’ as it features in the policies of the coalition government.

Keywords: crime prevention; localism; community sector; community justice; social capital; civil society; Big Society; responsibility; empowerment; multiculturalism

Chapter.  7085 words. 

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