Situation tables as the new crime prevention: theoretical underpinnings, strengths, weaknesses, and best practices
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Change in police calls-for-service has resulted in a shift in the role of police through the years. Specifically, the increase in mental health calls for police services has created the Community Safety and Well-Being (CSWB) model. The CSWB model seeks to prevent social disorganization through proactive community efforts. Situation Tables are a risk-driven, collaborative model in Ontario that falls under the CSWB model. Drawing on in-depth interviews from Situation Table coordinators and other participants, this thesis found that risk, collaboration, and harm reduction are the theoretical underpinnings of the Situation Table. Interestingly, participants identified Situation Tables as an alternative to incarceration in that they proactively address criminal risk factors and offer social services rather than engaging in law enforcement action. In addition, this thesis offers recommendations and best practices for the participation and implementation of Situation Tables as a learning tool for current and future Situation Table participants.