A Study on Peace and Security in Neighborhoods of Yazd



Extended Abstract

Urban population growth as one of the main features of the 20th century is leading to concentration of resources, funds, facilities and urban services and utilities in major cities. Physical and social development of cities and their transformation to heterogeneous social, cultural, and population centers have led to the increased rate of abnormalities in cities particularly in central areas, and to quick growth of heterogeneous population, social problems and economic poverty causing the emergence of urban damage and anomalous and unbridled malignant growth of abnormalities in cities. The city of Yazd is the most populous city of Yazd Province due to having occupational and welfare attractions as well as administrative concentration. Considering the rapid spread of urbanization in recent years in Yazd, the city has faced with massive uncontrolled immigration, and these floods of immigrants have settled there. Consequently, factors such as cultural diversity, misidentification of the immigrants and their lack of sense of belongingness to the new environment and new community, and lack of commitment to values have caused social deviances, cultural disintegration and occurrence of social damage in Yazd.

The study involves neighborhoods of Yazd. The population consists of all inmates (including criminals, convicts, and delinquents) in Yazd for the year 2007 and the sample consists of 127 inmates. The committed crimes consist of 15 crimes including murder, assault and battery, illegitimate relationship, embezzlement, theft, harassment, issuing bad checks, drinking alcohol, breaking traffic laws and driving violations, fraud, violation of municipal regulations, drug addiction and abuse, trafficking, kidnapping and family conflicts. The research is an applied one and its method is descriptive – analytical. Data collection was conducted using a questionnaire. The questionnaires were distributed among both male and female inmates in prisons of Yazd. The required information has been extracted from questionnaires to analyze the topic of the research. SPSS software has been used to analyze the research data qualitatively. It should be mentioned that in order to complete the data in some cases, the logs of daily reports in police stations were required, however, because of the huge volume of the job and inadequate cooperation on part of the police, only the questionnaire method is used.
This research aims at studying the socio-economic status of the inmates, pathology of social damage factors and causes influencing it, and their distribution pattern in Yazd city. The research also suggests solutions and strategies to reduce negative effects of the damage on the ecological, social and economic structure of urban areas of Yazd.

Results and Discussion
There is quite a broad diversity among urban areas and neighborhoods of Yazd city in terms of peace and security (and conversely, abnormalities and crimes). In this regard, neighborhoods of Yazd were classified into three groups in terms of peace and security (and conversely, abnormalities and crimes), namely secure, semi-secure and insecure neighborhoods. Moreover, according to the statistical data, male inmates are more than females. Among various factors, bad friends and joblessness are the most influential ones in committing crimes and delinquencies. Regarding the relationship between the level of education and committing crime and delinquency it could be concluded that the higher the level of education, the lower the rate of committing crime. According to the study, Mahdiab?d, ?z?dshahr and Saf?'eeyeh neighborhoods are the most unsafe and crime-prone neighborhood. Mahdiab?d has the most female inmates mostly immigrants. Most of the criminals were not natives of Yazd either coming into Yazd from their childhood or entering this city since last year. Among the committed crimes the commonest ones include trafficking, theft and illegitimate relationship, and the least ones are property disputes, alcohol drinking, and violation of municipal regulations. Considering the committed crimes it could be stated that social harm and damage of Yazd city could be minimized through application of appropriate strategies like high-quality education, creation and development of TV programs on social harm and crime hazards particularly its ominous implications for women, creation of job opportunities and decrease of unemployment rate, and provision of greater security by police forces in crime-prone areas.

Results of the study show that 66.4% of the criminals are natives of Yazd, while 33.6% of them are nonnative residents. The commonest age groups among the criminals are 25-34 and 35-44 which are mostly the appropriate age for work and economic activities. Most crimes and delinquencies are perpetrated by self-employed and unemployed people and the lowest rate of crime and delinquency commitment belongs to the farmer class. Most of the perpetrators are poor and belong to low-income groups of people. The main factor causing crime commitment and delinquency are unemployment (39.9 %) and bad friends (34.6 %). Among the crimes, the most important and common ones include trafficking (38%), theft (20%) and illegitimate relationship (15%). According to the study, Mahdiab?d neighborhood is the most unsafe and crime-prone neighborhood with 13.4% of the total crimes under study. The most common crime in this neighborhood involves trafficking including female prisoners, most of whom are nonnative people. Akramab?d, Ch?har-Men?r, Koochey-e Boyouk, Khoramsh?d, Yaqoobi and Mol?b?shi neighborhoods are considered as the safest neighborhoods or neighborhoods with the lowest level of crime and social deviance with less than 0.8% of total crimes. Neighborhoods of Yazd were thus classified into three categories in terms of peace and security, namely proper, semi-proper and low level neighborhoods.