Marianne williamson for president.


Crime Prevention

The State of American Crime

Among all industrialized nations, the United States ranks at the top in violent crime. We have the highest homicide rates, seven times higher than the average for other nations. For much of the neighborhoods and communities throughout the country, our local governments have failed to supply effective crime prevention solutions.

The biggest group of victims experiencing violence in America is children. We have some of the highest levels of youth violence and crime in the developed world. Youth violence is a leading cause of injury and death for young Americans aged 15 to 24 years. At some point in their lifetime, 54.5 percent of children and adolescents (age 0 to 17) experience some form of physical assault. Moreover, nearly a third of women in the United States have reported domestic violence.

In addition to the horrible price of violence for the people who experience it, crime and violence cost the U.S. economy hundreds of billions of dollars each year. According to a study by the Institute for Economics and Peace, the annual cost of police, justice systems, corrections facilities, and lost productivity from violent crime, homicide, and robbery, is over $3,000 for each U.S. taxpayer, or $460 billion for the United States economy.

Yet violence and crime don’t happen in a vacuum. A holistic response to this issue requires a deeper focus on its causes, as well as crime prevention solutions. Many of the underlying causes have been left unattended for far too long and merely addressing symptoms is unlikely to fundamentally reverse the tragic trajectory of violence in America.

Regarding crime, education and culture are the strongest preventative medicines. A core goal of a Williamson administration will be to make every public school in America a palace of learning, culture and the arts. In addition, we will revert to free tuition at state colleges and public universities, as was true until the mid-1960’s.

Research has shown that many of our citizens who live in the most violent, crime-ridden parts of our nation suffer the same kind of emotionally and physically debilitating PTSD as do veterans coming home from war. Yet for these people, the war is never over and the trauma is unending as these communities have become a breeding ground for continuing violence. Ultimately, it produces a crippling effect on their lives.

Addressing Crime & Violence Prevention

In America, our approach to managing violence and crime has typically trended towards largely ineffective punitive approaches, ignoring the underlying causes of our problems. In addition, the punitive — rather than rehabilitative — approach to holding violent criminals accountable only increases the statistical probability that, once released, such criminals will again perpetrate acts of violence.

What we know from ample research about violence and crime prevention in our communities is that crime can be drastically reduced. We have the wisdom and expertise to make positive shifts in the circumstances, both internal and external, that are likely to erupt in violent behavior. What we are lacking is the political willpower to invest in serious violence-prevention programs.

The federal government can support violence prevention through funding of course, but also through coordination, research, and sharing of best practices. We need to address whole systems and foster collaboration among federal, state and local agencies. Cities need strategic plans to prevent violence and coordinated efforts across multiple sectors to communicate with each other and community members. A Williamson presidency would initiate a far more serious, strategized focus on violence prevention as a response to violence and crime in America.

Effective Solutions to Crime & Violence

Improve Community Outreach

The Williamson Administration will:
  • Fund and increase the number of community outreach social workers, particularly in underserved neighborhoods. We must also ensure that the social workers responding to crisis are part of the same communities they help.
  • Hire and empower community outreach workers, from rehabilitated gang members to community elders, to help prevent crimes in their communities by monitoring, detecting and interrupting violence. 

Trauma-Informed Child- and Family-Service Systems

The Williamson Administration will:
  • Create an approach in which all parties involved in a child’s life recognize and respond to the impact of the child’s traumatic stress.
  • Create “Wraparound Programs” by ensuring public-private partnerships to provide healthcare and management services. Wraparound programs are collaborations between state or local government agencies and organizations that provide behavioral healthcare and management services. Providing wraparound services requires effective coordination and highly trained staff with sufficient time and resources to address complex cases.

Police and At-Risk Youth Relationship Building

The Williamson Administration will:

Fund workshops and intensive retreats so that the law enforcement can begin repairing and building relationships with communities that they serve, especially with the at-risk youth, in order to reduce disproportionate negative interactions that lead to arrest. 

Domestic Violence Prevention and Support Services

The Williamson Administration will:

Increase governmental support for families coping with the trauma of domestic violence. Such support will include emergency housing, emotional support, and tools that allow individuals and families to move forward personally and professionally.

Life Skills

The Williamson Administration will:

Encourage and fund, in schools and at the community level, the teaching of Social and Emotional learning modalities that engender self-awareness, empathy, impulse control, motivation, and nonviolent communication & social skills.


The Williamson Administration will:

Increase funding at the national and local levels for peer-to-peer or adult-to-youth mentoring, which has been shown to be exceptionally effective at empowering students to succeed.

Community Policing

The Williamson Administration will:
  • End the reliance on police and law enforcement to handle homelessness, mental health crises, and other non-violent situations.
  • Treat addiction as a public health rather than a criminal issue, providing more funding for resources such as treatment centers and needle exchange programs to care for those addicted. Incarceration is not an appropriate response to drug addiction.
  • Provide prevention resources instead of law enforcement to ensure minimal child and youth interaction with law enforcement.
  • Increase funding for community resources that reduces the overpolicing of our communities while providing community based solutions that address their needs before utilizing law enforcement.
  • Ensure a robust oversight to hold law enforcement accountable whenever they break the law.
  • We must end qualified immunity.

Quality After-School and Out-of-School Programming

The Williamson Administration will:

Provide resources for youth to engage in positive activities in their communities, both after school, and outside of school, so that these habits become principles and skills that students can carry with them for the rest of their lives.

Other Family Support Services

The Williamson Administration will:

Coordinate and improve the existing network between support services that pertain to crime and violence prevention in order to empower the family unite.

In Addition

As president, I will support the establishment of a U.S. Department of Peace, in order to coordinate domestic violence prevention efforts in conjunction with the Department of Justice and other relevant agencies. Throughout America there are extraordinary and extraordinarily successful peace-building efforts whose efficacy would be exponentially increased through a higher level of coordination and government support. Aligning federal initiatives, establishing joint funding streams, coordinating data systems, and sharing evaluation strategies with our states, cities and communities would give sophisticated techniques of violence prevention the primacy they deserve.

In Conclusion

While some would argue that these crime prevention programs “cost too much,” the reality is that they decrease the losses caused by violence in the US economy. A study by the non-partisan Washington State Institute for Public Policy found that diversion and mentoring programs produced $3.36 of benefits for every dollar spent, aggression replacement training produced $10 of benefits for every dollar spent, and multi-systemic therapy produced $13 of benefits for every dollar spent – in terms of reduced violence, crime and the cost to taxpayers.

However, no matter how much we do to prevent violence in the aforementioned ways, what matters as well is the realization that economic injustice, of itself, is a form of violence. Large groups of desperate people are a national security risk, whether in a corner of an American city or anywhere else in the world. Desperate people do desperate things. Ameliorating human despair is not just a sacred obligation of right living; it is the most powerful technique as well for the healing of our societies.