… Adding to the challenge for reform advocates is the difficulty of quantifying the results of reform through research, because the causes of crime trends are complicated and influenced by many factors, including, most recently, the pandemic.
“My main concern is that [politicians] don’t care about the details, they just want to have a good sound bite and a good promotional campaign,” says Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. “They’ll say things about these programs which are very supportive, but if we don’t back it up with solid evidence, [they] will turn on it and decide it’s not worth it. You can’t survive with rhetoric and advocacy.”
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