Most people feel safe in their neighborhood, but gun violence remains a major concern

Most people feel safe in their neighborhood, but gun violence remains a major concern
Most people feel safe in their neighborhood, but gun violence remains a major concern

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The latest opinion poll from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office suggests that most people feel safe in their neighborhoods, but gun violence remains a concern.

The University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Laboratory conducted the survey.

People living in all six zones participated, and the survey was taken in 2022 between Nov. 21-Dec. 27. Here is an overview of each zone:

  • Zone 1 covers downtown, Springfield and the east side.

  • Zone 2 covers Arlington and the Intracoastal West.

  • Zone 3 covers Southside, Mandarin and San Marco.

  • Zone 4 covers Riverside, Avondale, Ortega and Westside.

  • Zone 5 covers Northwest, New Town and Baldwin.

  • Zone 6 covers the Northside, San Mateo and Oceanway.

Of those surveyed, 87% said they feel safe in their neighborhood, up about 13% from the 2021 results. Despite that promise, people in every area said they want to see an increase in police presence in their neighborhoods.

One thing that hasn’t changed is the public’s concern about gun violence. In all six zones, respondents agreed that gun violence is their biggest concern.

Overall, 42% said they were concerned about gun violence.

According to News4JAX records, during the survey period there were 15 homicides in Jacksonville, and at least 12 of those involved gun violence, including a fatal police shooting.

The other biggest concerns for respondents were addressing homelessness (20%) and mental health in the community (14%).

The survey also addresses concerns about police brutality and whether this is something people in each zone personally worry about.

The last map shows:

  • A concern of 46% in zone 1

  • 36% in zone 2

  • 29% in zone 3

  • 39% in zone 4

  • 55% in zone 5

  • 41% in zone 6

Compared to 2020 data, this has risen with the exception of zones 1, 3 and 6. In 2020, 64% of zone 1 were concerned about police brutality, which is down 28%. Zone 3 remained the same and zone 6 is down 2%.

More than half of those surveyed (54%) agreed that JSO does a good job of handling complex investigations.

Only 38% of respondents believe that JSO has enough officers to meet the city’s needs.

This is the fourth time since 2016 that the community has been asked to weigh in on JSO’s performance.

In response to the latest results, Jacksonville Sheriff TK Waters said the department plans to reevaluate the city’s patrol areas and try to create a larger police presence.

Copyright 2023 by WJXT News4JAX – All rights reserved.

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