3 causes of crime


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3 causes of crime

  1. 1. Section 2 – The Causes of Crime The causes of crime are complex. Most people today accept that poverty, parental neglect, low self-esteem, alcohol and drug abuse are all connected in explaining why people commit crimes. Some people are simply at greater risk of becoming offenders because of the circumstances into which they were born. However, while coming from a disadvantaged background is much more likely to lead someone into crime, it does not necessarily mean that all people from disadvantaged backgrounds will be involved in criminal behaviour. Poverty, Geography & Crime The areas of Scotland which contain large Cities tend to have higher rates of crime. The Strathclyde area, which contains Glasgow and surrounding areas, has the highest level of crime in Scotland, and areas such as Dumfries & Galloway, have the lowest levels of crime. Crime by local police force, per 10,000 of the population 2011-2012 Police Region Dumfries & Galloway Northern Tayside Fife Grampian Central Lothian & Borders Strathclyde 1|P ag e Crime per 10,00 of population 410 475 475 485 520 550 598 698
  2. 2. According to the Glasgow Indicators Project, Glasgow is both the most deprived city and the most deprived local authority area in Scotland. Almost half of Glasgow’s resident – 285,000 people – reside in 20% of the most deprived areas in Scotland. One in three Glaswegian children lives in a household where no-one works, a figure that is much higher than the Scottish average (around one in five) In 2011-2012, Glasgow City had the highest overall crime rate out of all councils in Scotland. More than one-quarter of all serious assaults recorded by police in Scotland were committed in Glasgow City and its surrounding areas. With 18 serious assaults per 10,000 people, Glasgow’s figure is far higher than any comparable city (Edinburgh had 7 serious assaults per 10,000 people). The next most violent areas were Inverclyde, Renfrewshire, North Ayrshire and North Lanarkshire. Stabbings account for half of all murders in Scotland, and more than 50% of knives found in Scotland are seized in Glasgow. There are estimated to be more than 170 gangs in the Glasgow city region – this compares to 169 identified by the Metropolitan Police Service in London, a city over six times the size. If London had Glasgow’s ratio of gangs to population, it would have over 1,000 gangs. Violent crime has enormous consequences for individuals and communities. A 2011 study by the Princes Trust found that youth crime cost Scotland £112 million per year, or £300,000 a day. 2|P ag e
  3. 3. Lives are ruined. Young people acquire criminal records that can stay with them all their life. Young people who get involved in crime tend to do less well at school and fall into a downward spiral of poverty and crime. Some criminologists speak of the ‘revolving door’ of prison, poverty and more prison. Young people and entire communities can be labelled as bad. This makes it harder for individuals from deprived areas to get jobs. Companies may choose not to invest in an area due to fear of crime or because of the impact crime has had on skills and qualifications in the local area. Group Task – Causes of Crime Poverty & Geography Clearly there is a link between poverty and crime. In groups discuss: Why there is a link between poverty and crime  The impact of crime on poor communities and the people that live in them Complete a copy of the worksheet on the next page:- 3|P ag e
  4. 4. Poverty & Geography Work Sheet Poorer people living in poorer areas are more likely to become involved in crime because:_________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ Crime affects poor people in a number of ways:_________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ Poorer communities that have high crime rates suffer from:_________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________ 4|P ag e
  5. 5. Causes of Poverty – Greed Well-off individuals from affluent backgrounds can be involved in white collar crimes such as tax evasion, fraud and insider trading. In June 2012, Stephen Maxwell from Dalbeattie was found guilty at Kirkcudbright Sheriff Court of avoiding tax and national insurance contributions totalling more than £600,000. He was jailed for 5 years. Despite what some may believe, income tax fraud is not a victimless crime. Tax avoidance has it’s consequences. Funds that individuals or companies defraud from the Government are funds that could otherwise pay for schools and hospitals. In recent years, the term ‘serious organised crime’ has been used to describe high level, often multi-national crime, which is carried out by experienced and ruthless criminals. A great deal of money can be made from other people’s misery through dealing with drugs and human trafficking. Human trafficking is modern day slavery. It normally involves the poorest and most vulnerable girls and women from all over the world, who are ‘sold’ by criminal gangs. In March 2012, the human rights group Amnesty gave evidence to the Scottish Parliament that Scotland had 13.5% of the UK’s trade in humans, despite Scotland having less than 10% of the UK population. Cases of trafficking were found in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dumfries and Galloway, Falkirk and Grangemouth, Stirling and Tayside. Victims came from Lithuania, Slovakia, Nigeria, China, Estonia, Somalia, Thailand, Guinea and Russia. Glasgow-born Baroness Kennedy described the nature and extent of human trafficking in Scotland as, ‘a human rights abuse of terrible consequences’. Victims are trapped in a life of poverty, with their health and lives put at serious risk. Serious organised crime groups often deal in counterfeit goods such as ‘pirate’ CDs and DVDs and internet crime. Buying these goods, quite apart from taking money away from hard-working people employed in these industries, helps to fund drug dealing and human trafficking. 5|P ag e
  6. 6. What is the cause of these types of crimes? GREED! People want to make as much money as they can, as quickly as they can. We live in a society where people are judged not by the type of person they are, but by what they have. Our status in society is determined by us having: The right car  The right clothes  The right mobile phone  Etc................. To get these things some people choose not to work hard and save up for things, their greed overtakes them and they turn to crimes that will make them a great deal of money quickly! Causes of Crime – Greed 1. State 5 examples of crimes that are a result of greed. Group Task 2. Serious Organised Crime is a significant problem in the UK resulting in: Drug trafficking  Human trafficking  Counterfeit money and products  Internet Crime Your group has been brought together as a TASKFORCE in the fight against Serious Organised Crime. You have been asked by the Government to create a number of strategies that would make it more difficult for Serious Organised Crime to succeed in the UK. Complete a copy of the Government Feedback form that is found on the next page. 6|P ag e
  7. 7. Serious Organised Crime Taskforce Government Feedback Form  Strategy 1 - _______________ This strategy would be effective in tackling Serious Organised Crime because____________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________  Strategy 2 - _______________ This strategy would be effective in tackling Serious Organised Crime because____________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________  Strategy 3 - _______________ This strategy would be effective in tackling Serious Organised Crime because____________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________  Strategy 4 - _______________ This strategy would be effective in tackling Serious Organised crime because____________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________ 7|P ag e
  8. 8. Causes of Poverty – Family Background In the UK as a whole, nearly 1.5 million children are growing up in substance-abusing households. Over a million children have parents who abuse alcohol and around 350,000 children live in households where there is drug taking. The UK Government estimates that there are 120,000 ‘troubled families’ whose children are at extreme risk of repeating their parent’s criminal lifestyle. The children of neglectful parents are more likely to suffer psychological damage. The poor relationships their parents have with each other and with their children deprive the child of the love and attention it needs as a critical stage in its development. Psychologists have noted the lack of empathy (care for others feelings) that is a trait of young offenders. The lack of love in the family home, addictions to alcohol and/or drugs and an atmosphere of tension and/or violence are key causes of crime. Parental support, or the lack of it, perhaps explains why some children from disadvantaged backgrounds do become involved in crime. Poverty on its own many not lead to crime, but poverty in a wider sense, where the young person is deprived of strong role models, strong relationships and happiness from an early age may well be a key cause of crime. The consequences of a ‘chaotic’ upbringing are enormous. Dr Harry Burns has noted the relationship between neglect and stress in a child’s early years and health problems in later life. Life expectancy rates between Glasgow’s more wealthy areas, such as Jordanhill, and the poorer areas in the North and East of the city, can differ by 20 years. It appears that there is an equally strong relationship between early years and crime. 8|P ag e
  9. 9. There is indeed, a clear link between bad parenting and youth crime. Children who suffer the effects of bad parenting are more likely to be involved in activities such as: Gang involvement  Drug and alcohol addiction  Shoplifting  Vandalism  Anti-social behaviour Unfortunately the criminal behaviour of youths sets a life pattern. Youth offenders turn into adult offenders. Why?  Youth offenders tend to have poor experiences in education.........  No education = no jobs..........  Unemployment often leads to criminal activity to make ‘ends meet’.......  Prison = criminal record and new criminal contacts..........  Leave prison with new ‘skills’ and very little chance of a job......  Revolving door of re-offending throughout life! Causes of Crime – Family Background Answer in sentences 1. How does bad parenting lead to criminal behaviour? 2. Bad parenting results in youth offending. What are the common crimes committed by youth offenders? 3. Why do youth offenders often become lifelong adult offenders? 9|P ag e
  10. 10. Causes of Crime – Peer Pressure People can be heavily influenced by their friends when it comes to the development of attitudes and behaviour. With adults this can be seen in the ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ attitude. This means that if their friends/neighbours/colleagues get a new car they feel the need to get a new car. If their friends/neighbours/colleagues go on a nice holiday they feel the need to go on holiday....... This type of behaviour is a key cause of white collar crime as many middle class professionals overspend to keep up appearances and in desperation turn to fraud and tax evasion. Yes, adults are influenced by their peers, however children are most heavily affected. Young people spend a great deal of time with their friends at a point in their lives when they are very impressionable (easily led) Young people who are negatively affected by their peers can become involved in: Alcohol and drug abuse  Underage sex  Vandalism  Knife crime  Gang involvement  Bullying Class Discussion ‘Peer pressure is the biggest cause of youth crime’ Discuss 10 | P a g e
  11. 11. Causes of Crime Homework – The Riots 2011  In 2011 there was rioting in a number of key English cities.  Using the internet – the BBC news website Is a good place to start- find the answers to the following questions. 1. What event started the riots? 2. Which cities were involved in the riots? 3. What types of crime were committed by the rioters? 4. What was the average age of the rioters? 5. Experts have claimed that there are many causes of the riots. Describe at least THREE of them. 11 | P a g e
  12. 12. Causes of Crime Exam Practise Nat 4 Describe two causes of crime in Britain. (4 marks) Nat 5 Explain, in detail, the causes of crime in Britain. (Your answer must include information on at least three different causes of crime) (8 marks) 12 | P a g e