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Neo-Liberalism, Community, and Police Regionalization in Canada: A Critical Empirical Analysis

NCJ Number
Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management Volume: 28 Issue: 2 Dated: 2005 Pages: 337-352
Savvas Lithopoulos; George S. Rigakos
Date Published
16 pages
This paper analyzes the regionalization of police services, established through legislative initiatives in Canada and the effects on service delivery.
The impact of neo-liberalism on policing in Canada has been significant. Over the last 30 years, regionalized policing has become a mantra for provincial governments seeking to off-load the costs of provincial policing to newly legislated regions and municipalities. This paper empirically interrogates the claims made by regionalization proponents and considers the minimal literature on the effectiveness of police regionalization in Canada, followed by an outline of analytic constructs for assessing its effects. The analysis indicates that despite all the claims and popular assumptions surrounding police regionalization, regional police services are not demonstrably any more effective or efficient than non-regional services. Also, evidence suggests that small- and medium-sized police services are more successful in dealing with crime and operational costs than much larger regional services. Tables, notes, references


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