When you are a parent, your first priority is always the safety and well-being of your family. This may be a bit easier when your children are young and always by your side, but as they grow up and become more independent it can be difficult to keep track of them. It can be especially worrisome in cities with high crime rates. While we all think of dense urban areas as having higher crime rates, you may be surprised at some of these cities that may call for extra caution.
Many people think of cities like Birmingham as quaint and quiet Southern towns, but unfortunately the poor socioeconomic climate in the South as well as other areas in the country have had a major impact on crime rates. According to the Huffington Post, Birmingham has been rated as one of the most dangerous cities in America, with more than 1,300 violent crimes for every 100,000 citizens, which is the 10th highest rate in the country. As is often the case with high-crime cities, high unemployment and poverty rates have a serious impact. Birmingham’s poverty rate was 30.7 percent in 2013, almost double the national average. While Birmingham continues to struggle, however, it’s rates are improving.
While many cities with crime and poverty issues are slowly but steadily improving, Milwaukee unfortunately has seen a rapid increase in reported crime over the past few years, according to an article from CitiesJournal.com. The city has one of the highest rates for murder and rape in the country and, according to the article, residents have a one in 66 chance of being involved in a violent crime.
While we often think of large cities as having the worst rates of crime, small cities can have the same kinds of issues. Flint, Michigan has been in the news a lot recently for the disastrous water crisis that affected so many of its residents, but that is by far the first of this town’s troubles. Law Street Media reported in 2013 that Flint has consistently been rated as the most dangerous small city in America based on data from the FBI. Flint used to be a booming town for auto manufacturing, but has seen many hard times since then. The unemployment rate is high and the median income is close to the national poverty level. According to Law Street Media, Flint also has one of the lowest number of police officers per residents in the country.
While no specific city is listed as particularly dangerous in Alaska, it may come as quite a shock to know that the most recent information from the FBI shows that Alaska has the highest rate of violent crimes of any U.S. state. According to NBC, while Alaska doesn’t have as many murders as some states, it has by far the highest number of rapes and aggravated assaults in the country. In fact, the number of rapes is three times that of the national rate. This is also surprising considering the data shows Alaskan residents are less likely to be impoverished, as is common in other places with high crime rates.
It’s important to remember these communities also have a lot to offer and are home to many wonderful people. Whether you live in one of these cities (or states) or not, it’s always important to talk to your teen about staying safe and smart and using the right kind of protection around your home, such as high-quality security cameras, lights, locks and alarms. A secure home and responsible children give you peace of mind no matter where you live.
About the Author: Maria Springs is a writer, philanthropist, animal lover, Earth advocate and citizen of the world. She has an affinity for public radio and three-legged dogs.
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