Justice & Security Strategies, Inc. has partnered with a number of local agencies to promote public safety in neighborhoods across the country. Our work has been supported by the National Institute of Justice, the Bureau of Justice Assistance, and the Children's Trust of Miami-Dade. Find out more about our work below or contact us to find out how JSS can work with your agency.
Understanding Neighborhoods and Safety
What is a Neighborhood?
A neighborhood is a collection of residential properties sharing a common geography. But there is more to neighborhoods than just a collection of houses. Here at JSS, neighborhoods are also an important level of social interaction. Understanding neighborhood social functioning is key to improving the quality of life in these areas.
Collective Efficacy and Social Cohesion
Collective Efficacy refers to the ability of neighborhood residents to come together and exercise informal social control to achieve shared goals. Social cohesion refers to the feelings neighborhood residents of togetherness and belonging. Both are important concepts for understanding neighborhood health and safety.
Anchor points are the neighborhood facilities and resources that serve as a central focus for community interaction and information sharing. One of the cornerstones of our approach involves assessing and improving anchor points to facilitate the development of collective efficacy and social cohesion.
Many neighborhoods are not homogenous and it is a mistake not to recognize that certain areas within neighborhoods experience more problems than other areas. In our approach, we seek to identify those problematic areas and use targeted interventions to improve the quality of life within those areas.
We specialize in the use of police and public data, face-to-face residential surveys, and systematic social observations to assess the conditions within a neighborhood. Using this information, we can help identify areas within a neighborhood lacking collective efficacy and social cohesion to provide guidance for targeted interventions.