Emergence of Crime Prevention and Community Safety in the Context of the Crisis of Governance That Afflicted the UK during 1970 and 1980

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Representations of crime and punishment offer, in varying measure, titillating glimpses of the seductions of deviance, moral boundary maintenance and an anxiety-arousing frisson of fear. It is further mentioned that election campaigns did not mention crime as an important issue until 1970 when Margaret Thatcher developed law and order into a major arena of ideological conflict. Thus it is evident that the UK had realized the importance of community safety and crime prevention during the late 1970’s which prompted the government to chalk out policies and framework for crime prevention. This paper examines the emergence of crime prevention and community safety in the context of the ‘crisis’ of governance that afflicted the United Kingdom during 1970 and 1980.Reiner (2000, p.81) mentioned that the increases in recorded crime levels were fuelled further after the mid-1970s by the consequences of the fundamental shift in the political economy represented by the return of free market economies and the deregulation of an increasingly globalized market. It is further mentioned that the consequences of crime and social cohesion are enormous because of the widening of social divisions, and growth fo social exclusions. As social exclusions, economic, insecurity and inequality grew. the motives and opportunities of crime multiplied and the restraining effects of both formal and informal social controls are eroded. Dingwall and Davenport (cited in Fennell, 1995, p. 21) mentioned that the United Kingdom today faces a problem of crime which could not possibly have been forecast at the end of the Second World War. It is further stated that crime rate increased from 50,000 reported crimes in 1950 to 1.6 million in 1970 which further increased to 2.5 million in 1980. It is further stated in a comparative study by Biles that in the period between 1960 and 1979 the recorded crime rose by 177 percent in England and Wales (Fennel, 1995, p27).