Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation
Miami-Dade County, Florida
BCJI Funding Year: FY2018
BCJI Awardee: Miami-Dade County Office of Management and Budget
Research Partner: Justice and Security Strategies, Inc.
Focus Area: Miami-Dade South District - Population 49,904
Challenges: Violent Crime
Situated in an unincorporated area of south Miami-Dade County (MDC), Miami-Dade South District (MDSD) contains neighborhoods continually plagued by violence crime. From 2015-2017, MDSD experienced 4,223 violent crimes. This represents nearly 25 percent of the total violent crime that occurred in unincorporated areas of the county (4,223 of 16,991 violent crimes). Of these, 63 were homicides.
MDSD includes the census-designated places of Princeton, West Perrine, Naranja, and Goulds. Of the 49,904 residents who live in the area, 20 percent are under the age of 18, and 9.3 percent are persons over 65 years. 38.1 percent of residents identify as Hispanic, 42 percent identify as African-American, and 8.1 percent identify as Caucasian. The neighborhoods are stricken with destitution, with a poverty rate of 40 percent and an unemployment rate of 18.8 percent.
During the planning phase, project staff from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and Miami-Dade Police Department (MDPD) work closely with their research partner, Justice and Security Strategies (JSS). Led by Dr. Craig Uchida, residents and other community stakeholders reviewed the hot spot map of MDSD, identified one specific micro-target area to address during the implementation phase, and developed a comprehensive crime-based strategy and action plan. The data-driven strategic plan will include recommendations for strategies that offer a continuum of approaches to best address the specific crime problems.
Violence and social disorganization are complex issues that require a multi-disciplinary solutions. Therefore, carefully defined strategies that pinpoint specific areas, specific people, and targeted solutions were developed throughout the planning phase. The primary objectives of project PEACE - South Dade are to promote the Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation (BCJI) program, increase mutual trust, and improve community safety as part of a comprehensive strategy to rebuild neighborhoods and spur revitalization. Strategies will be selected that support the following goals:
- Goal 1: Improve community safety through the reduction of violent crime.
- Goal 2: Build community awareness of crime issues and crime-based services, including crime prevention.
- Goal 3: Improve relations between residents and police.
- Goal 4; Enhance coordination and delivery of social and support services within the targeted project hot spots.
Other Key Partners
Miami-Dade County Police Department, Miami-Dade County Public Housing and Community Development, Miami-Dade County District 9 Commissioner, Dennis Moss, Farm Share, and other local community-based organizations.
This project is supported by Cooperative Agreement No. 2018-BJ-BX-K035 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions contained herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. References to specific agencies, companies, products, or services should not be considered an endorsement by the author(s) or the U.S. Department of Justice. Rather, the references are illustrations to supplement discussion of the issues.