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Contingency and politics: The local government community safety officer role

Cherney, Adrian

Description

Community safety officers have become central to the delivery of crime prevention and community safety policy both in Australia and elsewhere. This article reviews the community safety officer (CSO) role in local government and provides results from interviews with CSOs in the Australian state of Victoria. The experiences, challenges and problems faced by CSOs in implementing Victorian schemes are outlined. It is argued that the focus by governments and criminologists on developing training...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorCherney, Adrian
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-13T22:44:01Z
dc.date.available2015-12-13T22:44:01Z
dc.identifier.issn1466-8025
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/79465
dc.description.abstractCommunity safety officers have become central to the delivery of crime prevention and community safety policy both in Australia and elsewhere. This article reviews the community safety officer (CSO) role in local government and provides results from interviews with CSOs in the Australian state of Victoria. The experiences, challenges and problems faced by CSOs in implementing Victorian schemes are outlined. It is argued that the focus by governments and criminologists on developing training packages, competencies and identifying 'what works' discounts the administrative and political environments in which local level CSOs work. These contexts present obstacles to strategy development and implementation. Likewise a similar criticism is made of the governmentality thesis, that it too fails to engage with and interrogate local practice, overlooking issues of contingency and agency that encompass the CSO role. It is concluded that this role is one concerned with change management, and that building CSO capacity requires the devolution of authority, resources and decision-making powers. Understanding how CSOs manage the barriers and 'crisis' they face in crime prevention and community safety will tell us more about 'what works' that is germane to effective policy development and implementation.
dc.publisherSage Publications Inc
dc.sourceCriminal Justice
dc.subjectKeywords: Australia; Capacity building; Community safety officers; Competencies; Crime prevention; Governmentality thesis
dc.titleContingency and politics: The local government community safety officer role
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.description.refereedYes
local.identifier.citationvolume4
dc.date.issued2004
local.identifier.absfor160201 - Causes and Prevention of Crime
local.identifier.ariespublicationMigratedxPub7903
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationCherney, Adrian, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.bibliographicCitation.issue2
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage115
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage128
local.identifier.doi10.1177/1466802504044911
dc.date.updated2015-12-11T10:15:29Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-18844394663
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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