Concerned about crime in your community? Welcome a refugee.
That’s the word, according to the results of an ambitious study by the New American Economy released this week.
Researchers, who examined crime rates and resettlement data to see if there was a link between refugees and U.S. crime rates, discovered that high immigrant rates do not necessarily translate to high levels of criminal activity.
In fact, among areas surveyed crime rates actually dropped sharply where immigrants resettled, including Southfield, Mich.
Rather than crime increasing, nine out of 10 of the communities actually became considerably more safe.
Southfield was among the cities that received the largest influx of refugees relative to their populations, and nine out of 10 that also experienced the greatest decrease in violent and property offenses, according to the study.
Between 2005 and 2015 Southfield gained about 4,500 refugees, primarily from Iraq, which resulted in a 6 percent population lift. During that same period of time of concentrated population growth, violent crime decreased by 77 percent and property crimes dropped about 46 percent – more of a drop than any of the other 10 cities researched.
Photo courtesy of Global Detroit