When I moved into a densely populated urban neighborhood south of Louisville, Kentucky with my husband a few years ago we noticed two things right away. We experienced more crime than in the neighborhood we’d moved from. And in no time we knew a large swathe of our neighbors, versus the sole couple we knew on our old block.

In conversation with neighbors one night, a friend from the next block made a passing comment. “You have a responsibility to the neighborhood when you live somewhere like this,” she said. Unlike in the suburbs where you can come home, close your garage door, and be done with the world outside, here we all look out for each other — and we care, passionately, about what happens in our neighborhood.

And that’s key to reducing crime, according to University of Michigan professor Marc A. Zimmerman, Ph.D., who wrote “Want to fight crime? Plant some flowers with your neighbor” based on his work with the University of Michigan School of Public Health Youth Violence Prevention Center.

Eager to learn how people like my neighbors and I could battle a recent spate of crime in our community, I reached out to Zimmerman for insights into his research that anyone looking to prevent crime in their neighborhood could learn from. And I spoke with Major Joshua Judah, Commander of my neighborhood’s police division.

source: nbcnews.com

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