Winner ECPA 2018: Mediation of polarisation and inter-group conflicts in Finnland

On 6 December 2018, this year’s European Crime Prevention Award (ECPA) was awarded during the Best Practice Conference (BPC) in Vienna, Austria.

The winner is a project from Finnland. "The Forssa Approach: mediation of polarisation and inter-group conflicts” is a project based on a thorough study in the Finnish town Forssa in 2016. The project aimed at reducing violent crimes and conflicts between local youth and residents of a reception centre. The project also targeted the inhabitants of the community at large because people noticed the tense atmosphere. The project aimed at restoring a sense of security, to defuse the polarised situation and to prevent further clashes in the town.

“The Forssa approach” was established on neutral and transparent communication and multidisciplinary collaboration enabling exchange of information and coordination of activities. Community mediation and dialogue was the method used by professional mediators and police for recognising the interests and needs of conflicting parties. Discussions of the conflict in the community at large continued and a media project for students was initiated and completed. The project calmed down the situation in Forssa and defused intergroup conflicts and polarisation between locals and asylum seekers. Violent crimes ceased completely.

More information about "The Forssa Approach"

The Lithuanian project Runner Up - Šiauliai District Discovers a Security Formula made the second place. The third place won the Hungarian project  Runner Up - My neighbour is the policeman!

Learn more about the European Crime Prevention Award and the other winners.

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