Quality of Life Crime And The Connection to Serious Crime

According to the New York Times, a recent, particularly brazen shooting in a park in Harlem has led some residents to voice their concern about quality of life crime which they say leads to an atmosphere that encourages more serious crime. Among the quality of life concerns described are marijuana smoking in public view, and young "wannabe" gang members lurking vaguely around certain areas. It's an interesting snapshot of perceptions of safety and also makes the connection to class and gentrification. Go here to view the article.


As a Harlem resident myself, this article struck home with me. Although I'm not sure we can ever make a direct link between these shootings and quality-of-life issues, I think the neighborhood has a right to try to set and enforce codes of conduct in public spaces. The other goal would be to try to restore some sense of safety in the neighborhood, and dealing with bad behavior in a public park is a great way of doing that.