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UPF Represented at Side Meeting of UNODC Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice 2022

UPF International —Dr. Thomas G. Walsh, the chair of UPF International, was one of the speakers at an online conference on reducing crime and violence.

“Halving Violence by 2030 (SDG 16.1+): The Role of Cities, Evidence, and Faith Leaders in Getting Action Now” was a side event to the 31st Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, organized by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), based in Vienna, Austria.

The side event, which was held on May 16, 2022, was organized by the International Organization for Victim Assistance with the support of the UNODC’s Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Section and the UN-Habitat’s Safer Cities Program.

The panel focused on accelerating action to halve violent crime by 2030 by building on the use of knowledge and essential methods. It brought together experts from UNODC and UN-Habitat, Latin America, the pathfinder cities of London and Toronto, and a coalition of faith leaders, exploring their role in halving violent crime through prevention.

Dr. Thomas G. Walsh, speaking in his capacity as the co-chair of the Coalition of Faith-Based Organizations, explained why faith leaders are well positioned to help in reducing crime and violence.

The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 16.1  calls on states to significantly reduce all forms of violence and related death rates everywhere. Resolutions of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), system-wide guidelines, and the 2021 Kyoto Declaration on Advancing Crime Prevention, Criminal Justice and the Rule of Law confirm the essential methods for preventing violence nationally and locally. Although pathfinder cities have reduced violent crime by 50 percent within a few years by using these essential methods, they are not well known or used.

In March 2021, UPF Chair Dr. Thomas G. Walsh joined the panel of experts at the 14th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, held in Kyoto, Japan, in calling for investment in accelerators to achieve SDG 16.1:

  • Raise awareness to make decision-makers and the public aware of what works;
  • Train human capacity to plan and implement violence prevention;
  • Use safety monitoring tools to guide decision-makers on science, implementation, and measuring results;
  • Multiply success stories to network science, guidelines, and pathfinder successes;
  • Provide adequate and sustained funding for prevention.

A two-minute video on the logic of investing in accelerators to achieve SDG 16.1: https://youtu.be/bKZjRLiRq4E (also available in French and Spanish)

A two-minute video from a survivor on the urgency of using evidence to invest in what works: https://youtu.be/S_f9F_JYdGI

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