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Safety Sense - A Realistic Perspective - A Study of Employee Concern About Downtown Crime and Office Building Security

NCJ Number
Date Published
81 pages
This 2-volume report includes a summary of a 3-year project funded by LEAA to develop coordinated efforts to deal with crime and fear of crime in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, and a copy of one of the project's major products, a study of employee concerns about downtown crime and office building security.
The project also addressed the issues of the lack of public awareness of the need for involvement in crime prevention initiatives, lack of effective communications among the various groups and individuals concerned with crime, and increasing isolation of downtown community members as a result of fear of criminal violence. The major project activities included an assessment of security conditions in 80 downtown office buildings, an educational outreach campaign, and the establishment of a Downtown Safety Council to coordinate and plan continuing crime prevention efforts. The project reached large numbers of people through educational safety seminars, achieved changes in office building security plans, and generated both extensive volunteer efforts and the cooperation of private and public sector officials. Efforts to secure a formal endorsement of the program from the major business organization were unsuccessful, however. Nevertheless, the project was unquestionably a successful grassroots effort. Survey questionnaires received from 2,000 downtown employees revealed that most employees considered crime to be a major concern. Most of those who expressed concern had either been a victim or had personal knowledge of a crime in the downtown area. Few respondents viewed their office building's security conditions as being excellent; the majority considered building security to be fair or poor. All of the 20 office buildings surveyed for the 1980 report had inadequacies in security. Security provisions for employees working before or after regular working hours were generally lax or nonexistent. Numerous additional findings and recommendations addressed to office building managers, employers, employees, and the media are provided. Figures, survey instruments, a safety manual, and other project materials are provided.