Surveys costing $46.9M to help reduce, prevent crime
The findings of three surveys conducted within the last year and focused on crime trends and the operations of criminal justice systems were handed over to the Minister of Home Affairs, Robeson Benn on Friday.
In keeping with the government initiatives to strengthen the security sector by reducing crime and improving citizen security nationwide, the Ministry collaborated with the University of Guyana (UG) through the Inter-American Development Bank’s (IDB) Citizen Security Strengthening Programme (CSSP) to conduct the three national surveys, the Ministry noted in a statement.
The three surveys were done by the University of Guyana, Department of Academic Engagement, at a total cost of $46.9 million. The surveys commenced in 2021 and concluded in July 2022, focused on the following areas:
- The Business Victimization Survey, which solicited responses from local firms concerning the types, incidence and prevalence of crime experienced; the items stolen or damaged; the costs of crime, including financial loss or damage; the reporting patterns and action taken by the relevant authority (police, etc.).
- The Quality of Government Services Survey, whereby a random sample of citizens who have sought government services relating to the Criminal Justice System was done at government service locations with the intention of determining the overall citizen’s satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the services provided based on the outcomes and efficiency of service.
- The Safe Neighbourhood and Public Perception on Safety Survey, whereby representative samples from each of the twenty (20) CSSP beneficiary communities were surveyed and compared with responses from a representative sample of residents from other Urban Communities throughout Guyana so that the impact of CSSP crime and violence prevention interventions can be assessed and changes in the levels of Crime and Violence over time in various communities can be documented.
Minister Benn thanked the IDB and UG for their support in conducting the surveys and the evaluation and understanding of the reports to be further used in developing approaches towards the issues of improved policing and the reduction of crime and violence in total, particularly in poor communities and those affecting women and children.
“The IDB Citizen Security Strengthening Program is supporting the Government of Guyana to improve the rule of law through the strengthening of citizen security and justice institutions, recognising a nexus between the rule of law, and creating a competitive business environment that will attract investors,” indicated Lorena Solorzano Salazar, IDB Chief of Operations and Acting Country Representative in Guyana.
Meanwhile, Deputy Vice Chancellor for UG, Dr Emmanuel Cummings during his remarks indicated that one of the recommendations, after reviewing the surveys, is to have evidence-based policies.
He stated that this is one of the main strategies in dealing with issues of security, safety, and having an environment that fosters economic development.
The recently completed Surveys aim to establish baseline information, compare current with previous data and assist policymakers in decision making, strategic planning, operational improvements, legislative reforms for capacity building and other initiatives to reduce the rates of crime and violence in Guyana.