Are Controversial Programs in Detroit Actually Reducing Crime?

Project Green Light and aggressive blight removal — are they working?

Jake Neher/WDET

Detroit’s Project Green Light now has 500 businesses signed up around the city. Mayor Mike Duggan, Police Chief James Craig and other officials say there’s no question the program is helping businesses keep crime away. But is that backed up by data?

Detroit Free Press reporter Allie Gross has been looking into that question for over a year now.

Mussa Bazzi is the owner of the Mobil gas station at East Jefferson and Alter Rd. His business was one of the first to sign up for Project Green Light.

Gross and Bazzi join Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson to talk about the program and its impact on crime.

Jake Neher/WDET

Meanwhile, a new study from researchers at Wayne State University’s College of Criminal Justice shows blight demolition in Detroit neighborhoods has reduced crime.

Aggressive blight removal is something Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan touted as critically important during his State of the City speech. The city has faced criticism for moving too fast on demolitions to the detriment of public health and the environment.

Charles Klahm and Matthew Larson are the Wayne State researchers who conducted the study. They join the program to discuss their findings.

Click the audio player above to hear those conversations.


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