Ancillary Meeting Nr. 179

UN-Congress 2021 Kyoto, Japan

Successful Actions to Reduce Violent Crime by 50% by2030 – SDG16.1

Organization Name: International Organization for Victim Assistance; Peace in Our Cities Network; German Crime Prevention Congress – DPT; Fundación para el Estudio de la Seguridad y Gobernanza; UN Habitat Safer Cities; Canadian Municipal Network for Crime Prevention


Affiliation: Non-governmental Organization(NGO)

Subjects the session will cover:
Crime Prevention,Violence,Urban Security


Moderator: Irvin Waller

Irvin Waller is Professor Emeritus, University of Ottawa, Canada and adviser to governments across the world. His new book on Science and Secrets of Ending Violent Crime proposes actions to reduce violent crime across the world by 50% and so achieve goals in SDG 5 and 16. The book explains to decision makers and citizens what works, how to implement it and why local and national governments will buy in. He has been recognised internationally for his advocacy to use evidence and best practice to prevent crime and protect victim rights. His 50-year career spans research and policy development from upstream prevention to offender rehabilitation. He was a director general in the Solicitor General of Canada (now Public Safety Canada) in 1970´s working on abolition of the death penalty, gun control and crime prevention. His trail blazing work to get the UN General Assembly to recognize rights for victims in 1985 earned him multiple awards internationally and shaped 30 years working to persuade governments to end violence in crime ridden cities. He was the founding executive director of the International Centre for Prevention of Crime Affiliated with the UN. He is a member of the WHO Violence Prevention Alliance and is invited to UNODC and Habitat meetings on violence prevention. He is a well known public speaker in English, French and Spanish. Irvin Waller will highlight the main conclusions from his new book on Science and Secrets of Ënding Violent Crime and why we have a solid science of violence prevention, agreement on how to implement it, and practical ways to help governments make the transformations to use evidence and success to save lives, stop women being raped and protect our children. It highlights and explains to decision makers programs already proven to have prevented violence by 50% based on sources such as the World Health Organization. It uses ECOSOC guidelines on urban crime prevention (1996) and national crime prevention (2002) as well as the WHO/UNODC INSPIRE (2016) to identify the essentials for national success and discusses cities that have already achieved 50% reduction. It presents compelling arguments for governments to make the transformations now and new ways to raise awareness, train the implementers, and form communities of practice to achieve this.

Veronica Martinez-Solares

Ms. Veronica Martinez-Solares (MA in Victimology, LLB in UNAM) is Director of Reaserch for the Safety, Security, and Development Initiative at the Fundación para el Estudio de la Seguridad y Gobernanza, A.C. (, as well as Member of the Board of Directors at the International Organization for Victim Assistance. Her production and strong teamwork skills have allowed her to work jointly with the UN Habitat, the International Centre for Sustainable Cities, the World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the UNDP, the UNESCO, the International Developmet Research Centre, the Global Consortium on Security Transformation, the European Forum for Urban Security, as well as several universities in Latin America, amongst others. She has been visiting researcher at the University of Ottawa and the University of Cambridge, as well as ad-hoc judge at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. She has coordinated and developed relevant documents on crime prevention such as the Mexican General Law for the Social Prevention of Violence and Crime (2011); the Regional Model for a Comprehensive Crime Prevention Policy promoted by EFUS and EuroSociAL (2014-2015); the Promising Practices and Overview of Global Citizenship Education Approaches to Support the Rule of Law and the Culture of Lawfulness based on more that 650 experiences around the world part of the E4J Initiative and the UNESCO (2018-2019); the Violence Prevention, Access to Justice, and Economic Empowerment of Women in Latin America project funded by the International Development Research Centre and developed in 5 countries (2016-2018); and she was the main external evaluator for the Guide for the Methodological Analysis and Systematization of Data of the Quality of Public Spending on Reducing Violence Against Women (BID, 2018).

Rachel Locke

Rachel Locke is Director of Impact:Peace at the Kroc Institute of Peace and Justice at the University of San Diego. Rachel has extensive experience delivering evidence-based violence prevention solutions to some of the most difficult international contexts while simultaneously advancing policy for peace. Prior to joining IPJ, Rachel was Head of Research for violence prevention with the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies at New York University’s Center on International Cooperation. In this capacity, Rachel led coalition building and evidence curation with the UN, bilateral governments, the African Union, civil society and others to explore the challenge of delivering the 2030 Agenda targets for peaceful societies (SDG 16.1). Rachel also served as Senior Policy Advisor with the US Agency for International Development where she developed and represented agency-wide policy on issues concerning conflict, violence and fragility. She also led USAID research and policy on crime, conflict, and fragility and worked extensively on program design, implementational and evaluation primarily in Africa. After leaving USAID, Rachel launched a new area of work for the National Network for Safe Communities at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, bridging effective violence reduction approaches from the U.S. to municipalities globally. This work involved direct collaboration with law enforcement, national and city-level government and civil society actors. Among other initiatives, Rachel launched a three-year effort across two states and five municipalities in Mexico at a time of exceptionally high violence. Rachel’s experience bridges the humanitarian, development, peacebuilding and urban violence realms. She holds a Master’s in International Affairs from Columbia University, Graduate School of International and Public Affairs. She has also published a variety of articles and other works focusing on violence prevention, humanitarian aid, conflict and transnational organized crime.

Juma Assiago

UN-Habitat is the central focus in the UN system on how to make cities safer from crime, particularly SDG11.7 and SDG 16.1 and 16.2 and SDG 5.2. It adopted the United Nations System-wide Guidelines on Safer Cities and Human Settlements in 2019, building on 20 years of working with cities in Low and Middle Income Countries. It formed the Global Network of Safer Cities (GNSC), which is an initiative of UN-Habitat to support local authorities and urban actors to provide safety in cities. It provides an international platform for cities around the world and is active in 77 cities across 24 countries. The GNSC is developing an “Urban Safety Monitor” to measure key indicators that might contribute to significant reductions in violent crime. Crime and violence threaten the social cohesion and economic stability of cities. One in five people worldwide has been a victim of crime and violence. The Safer Cities Program looks at violent crime as an aspect of the broader issue of social cohesion. Public safety, social cohesion, and prosperity all feed into each other. Socialization processes shape our attitudes, behaviors, and lifestyles; nobody is born a criminal. Mr. Assiago calls on cities to join the Safe Cities Program in its goal of building a global network of communities for public safety. He calls on the international community, governments and donors to support this work to significantly reduce violent crime.

Felix Munger

The Canadian Municipal Network on Crime Prevention (CMNCP) is a community of practice created to build capacity and mobilize Canadian municipalities to prevent and reduce crime and foster community safety and well-being. CMNCP currently has over 80 members representing 50% of the Canadian population. CMNCP aims to increase investment in effective, evidence-based, and collaborative crime prevention strategies, including innovations in schools, housing, social and youth services, health, and preventative policing (CMNCP, 2016a). Though Edmonton has made the commitment to a 50% reduction, CMNCP has not yet committed to specific measurable reductions in violent crime though its mission is to achieve significant reductions. The CMNCP has developed an impressive training course on community safety and well-being planning. It has developed Action Briefs for decision makers on effective ways to reduce crime and increase community safety. These show what has worked, how to implement them, and the case for all orders of government to invest. ¨Cities and governments should be able to save tax dollars by investing in proven prevention practices, rather than investing in costly reactive measures such as policing, courts, and corrections. Generally, the social return on investment is up to $18 per dollar invested ¨. Dr. Felix Munger is the executive director of the Canadian Municipal Network on Crime Prevention. Felix holds a diploma in mental health nursing and a PhD in Community Psychology. He is an expert in organizational collaboration, mental health, addiction, crime prevention, organizational equity, and organizational capacity development. He has experience as a clinician, planner and evaluator of mental health and addiction services, including harm reduction (i.e., needle exchange and safe consumption sites). He is also a facilitator with 20 years of experience facilitating strategic planning, priority setting, and collaboration building across Canada with a wide range of stakeholders including racialized and Indigenous communities. Most recently, Felix has acted as a crime prevention expert for the European Police and Law Enforcement Working Group RAN POL and UN Habitat in validating the Safer City Guidelines. Felix has provided consulting services on behalf of not-for-profit organizations (i.e., hospital, CMNCP) and a social enterprise (Sustainable Societies Consulting Group) for more than 15 years.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: