Crime prevention issues

In order to reduce crime and increase security, it is necessary not only to investigate crimes that have been committed, prosecute offenders and provide support to victims, but also to prevent as many crimes as possible - and this requires help from society as a whole. Since the causes of crime are multifaceted, the measures taken must be adapted to different circumstances. The Government's goal is to make all of Sweden a safe country to live in.

If the measures against crime taken within the judicial system are to be effective, it is necessary to cooperate with actors outside the judicial system. The reverse is also true. Measures against crime taken by those outside the judicial system's agencies must be given support by the Swedish Police Service and other actors within the judicial system.

It is important that crime prevention efforts are conducted at local level by those who are most familiar with a community's problems. Crime reduction efforts require cooperation and involvement at all levels. Crime prevention efforts must therefore be adapted to the situation in the community. There are currently some 300 local crime prevention councils in Sweden's municipalities and districts. Various actors such as the police service, schools, social services and the business sector cooperate to prevent crime and increase security. In addition, many values-based organisations at local level actively contribute in crime prevention efforts.

Local crime prevention efforts must be based on the knowledge of what works in practice if they are to create the potential for achieving good results. The Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention has been tasked with ensuring that crime prevention actors at local level have access to knowledge so as to be able to prevent crime and insecurity, based on local conditions. To help the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention support these efforts effectively, the Riksdag has been allocating special funds for this purpose for several years.

The EU Crime Prevention Network (EUCPN) was formed during the Swedish Presidency of the EU in 2001. The network aims to contribute to the development of different aspects of crime prevention efforts at EU level and support crime prevention measures at national and local level by means that include spreading knowledge of routines. For example, a conference is arranged every year on a special theme at which projects to reduce that type of crime, and which have received the best evaluations, are highlighted and discussed