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Abstract

Many recent studies have revealed that not only are residents of public housing the most vulnerable segment of the American population in terms of criminal victimization, but that even in projects where the actual incidence of crime is not high, a great fear of crime prevails, especially among the elderly tenants. There is general consensus among crime prevention experts that crime reduction programs in public housing must utilize an integrated set of measures, including: (1) physical design, security hardware, and maintenance improvements by management; (2) increased organization of tenants around crime prevention issues; (3) employment of unemployed tenants--both youths and adults--on the rehabilitation of their projects; (4) establishment of on-site crisis intervention and other social service programs; (5) better cooperation between public housing security personnel and the local police; and (6) more public-private agency investment in the upgrading of public housing projects and their surrounding neighborhoods. The Department of Housing and Urban Development's two-year, $ho million Anti-Crime Demonstration in Public Housing launched in 1979 is the first attempt by the Federal government to wage such a comprehensive attack on crime and its attendant problems in our nation's most neglected residential areas.

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