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Community Safety at LISC



The Local Initiatives Support Corporation launched the Community Safety Initiative (CSI) with the Police Executive Research Forum in 1994 in recognition of the fact that public safety is fundamental to the health and vitality of communities. All people deserve to feel that it is safe for their children to walk to school or play in the local park, as much as they need quality affordable housing, good jobs and strong schools. Safety is also critical to attracting new homeowners and businesses to neighborhoods where such investments can be catalysts for revitalization.     

CSI helps make neighborhoods safe by supporting teams of police, residents, community developers and other partners that work together to address crime and disorder challenges that thwart community progress. Through its technical assistance and training services, CSI helps those teams create a framework for joint decision-making that goes far beyond basic exchange of information. CSI then leverages its connections to LISC's local offices and investment partners to provide the financial resources needed to help community developers and police translate shared goals and good will into concrete projects that yield tangible results: hot spots replaced with assets like quality housing, vibrant commercial districts and safe streets and parks.

This approach has yielded greater and more sustained reductions in crime and disorder and improvements in community-police relations than in areas where community developers and police operate independently. It is also integral to community-driven, comprehensive revitalization - the mission of LISC's Building Sustainable Communities initiative, now underway in more than 100 neighborhoods. On the national level, CSI shares best-practices, advocates for supportive policies and fosters institutional alliances to create a ripe environment for collaborative safety work to revitalize communities.

In 2012, the Justice Department recognized the impact of this work and selected LISC to be the national technical assistance provider for its Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation Program (BCJI). BCJI is an innovative federal effort to fuel place-based responses to crime hot spots.

Learn more about CSI's strategy, proven results and partnership network