Several police officers sitting in chairs and listening to a presentation.

Reducing Crime and Restoring Trust in Mexico .

Local Governance and Decentralization | Rule of Law and Security Sector Strengthening | Violence Prevention | Democracy and Governance
Latin America and the Caribbean

Violence Prevention and Reduction Activity

Project Dates: August 2020 - August 2024
Addressing root causes of violence in Mexico is key to reducing crime and restoring citizens’ trust.

In Mexico, crimes such as assaults, muggings, public disturbances, and robberies are frequent. Because local authorities often do not address these crimes, citizens lose trust in government and become reluctant to cooperate with law enforcement. This dynamic weakens the ability of the justice system to successfully investigate and prosecute crimes.

The Violence Prevention and Reduction Activity (PREVI) strengthens the capacity of municipal governments and communities to effectively resolve and mitigate local crime and violence. It shifts the focus from punitive justice to preventative, proactive civic justice and policing consistent with the government of Mexico’s Modelo Nacional de Policía y Justicia Cívica (National Policing and Civic Justice Model). Through this approach, local authorities build trust with citizens and generate information that can be shared with state prosecutors to better allocate criminal justice system resources. By providing tailored assistance to each target municipality, the activity helps local public agencies and organizations address the root causes of violence to prevent and reduce crime and violence in the long term.

Prior Initiatives

The Violence Prevention and Reduction Activity rose from USAID’s Juntos Para la Prevención de la Violencia project, which loosely translates as “preventing violence together.” JPV was in effect from October 2015 to October 2020 and was the first violence and crime prevention effort using the local systems framework in Mexico. JPV had ground-breaking results in reducing gender-based violence and promoting civic justice, both of which influenced public policy at all government levels. The project resulted in a more than 70% increase in municipal government institutional capacity and a 15% decrease in violence among the youth that were served by the project.

Project Goals

  • Support local responses to low-level crimes and community violence using evidence-based interventions
  • Reduce likelihood of at-risk youth being imprisoned or on probation for crimes and violence
  • Improve coordination between courts of civic justice, municipal law enforcement, and criminal justice personnel