As random crime seems to be a prevalent issue in Vancouver as of late, a timely new online survey has revealed some troubling trends when it comes to perceptions of crime in the province, with nearly half of residents saying they fear they’ll be a victim of crime.
The survey, conducted by Research Co., comes on the heels of Vancouver Police releasing some troubling statistics of their own.
Astonishingly, 48% of British Columbians fear the reality of becoming a victim of crime in their own community “a great deal” or a “fair amount.” This is up six points when compared to a similar poll Research Co. conducted back in December of 2020.
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In recent weeks the VPD has put out some staggering numbers when it comes to crime rates in a variety of areas. A statement from the VPD in October said that more than four people are randomly attacked everyday in Vancouver. They also revealed that between January 1 and October 15, there was a 550% increase in violent shoplifting cases.
When looking at the different regions across the province, the fear of crime is highest in Metro Vancouver (54%), followed by Northern BC (49%), the Fraser Valley (41%), Vancouver Island (41%), and Southern BC (32%).
While 63% of British Columbians would feel safe walking alone in their own neighbourhood at night, this is down five points since 2020.
Some of the results vary greatly when it comes to how safe men and women feel in their respective neighbourhoods.
“Three-in-four men in British Columbia (74%) say they would feel safe strolling through their neighbourhood at night,” said Mario Canseco, President of Research Co., in a statement. “Only 53% of women share the same point of view.”
When it comes to perceptions around the frequency of crime, 44% of British Columbians believe criminal activity has increased in their communities in the past four years.
Another troubling revelation from the survey was that 20% of British Columbians have been victims of an assault or a break-in over the last four years.
Residents were asked why they feel this is the case, and 48% of respondents said they believe that mental health and drug addiction is to blame, while 38% feel its due to the illegal drug trade or criminal gangs.