Police-defunded city skyrockets in national list of residents thinking of moving away due to crime

SEATTLE, WA – The Household Pulse Survey recently reported that nearly two out of 10 adult residents surveyed in the Seattle metro area have considered moving away over the past six months due to a combination of a rise in the cost of living and out-of-control crime rates.

Of the 600,000 survey participants, nearly half listed “rent increases” as the primary consideration for leaving the city. Right behind that, with more than one-third identifying crime and unsafe neighborhoods as the leading reasons.

According to the National Review, that 38% mark puts Seattle ahead of New York, Chicago, LA, Houston, Philadelphia, San Francisco and other major metropolitan areas known for high crime rates, for residents thinking of bailing due to crime.

In fact, Seattle boasts an estimated population of 750,000 making it the 18th largest city in the nation. Given that the survey included the larger Seattle-Tacoma metropolitan area, it still ranks at only 15th. Seattle Times journalist Gene Balk reported on this survey earlier this month.

“On a personal note, my own sense of safety in my neighborhood has been shaken in recent months,” Balk wrote. “I have lived for many years in Belltown near Pike Place Market, and I’ve never felt unsafe here. But I have felt less safe since the horrific killing of Eina Kwon, who owned a restaurant a couple of blocks from where I live.”

The slaying to which Balk referred was that of a woman who was eight months pregnant. She and her husband were sitting in their car, stopped at an intersection, when they were shot.

“More recently, five people were shot in a grocery store parking lot in Rainier Beach in South Seattle, and a man was fatally shot near Westfield Southcenter Mall in Tukwila,” Balk continued. “It’s easy to see how violent crimes in such public spaces can contribute to the perception of one’s neighborhood not being a safe place.”

Even though he was quick to point out that violent crime was not necessarily high for a large urban area, Seattle has seen a 24% increase in homicides and a 30% rise in vehicle thefts.

Balk also pointed to perceptions as a motivating factor, saying, “…the survey question isn’t about crime rates — it’s about perceptions of safety, and feeling pressure to move because of those perceptions. And sometimes there is a discrepancy between an individual’s perceived safety and actual crime rates.”

Seattle ranks among the top cities when it comes to property crimes as well. And, as Balk points out, “property crimes can also have a negative impact on perceptions of neighborhood safety.”

According to statistics that Balk listed, there were approximately 51,000 respondents that actually had moved, if only to a safer neighborhood.

Not lost in all of this conversation is the fact that since the summer of 2020, Seattle as been one of the cities that has seen the biggest push from politicians and citizens alike, to either abolish or defund the police. 2022 saw the Seattle Police Department reach 30-year lows in staffing.
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We bought our land outside a mountain town. 15 miles out of the city and we’re allowed to own guns to protect from criminals. Move to Arizona where you can protect yourself!

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