Journal of Offender Rehabilitation
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Violent victimization by offenders has led to concerns over the negative consequences that this has on victims, including a greater fear of crime. Because their disadvantaged status leads to greater rates of violent victimization, it is speculated that fear of crime will be higher among the poor and racial minorities. Examining the common violent crime of assault, this hypothesis is tested by comparing the results of two national Canadian surveys, the 1991 post-censal Aboriginal People’s Survey (N = 18,000+), and the 1993 Canadian General Social Survey (N = 10,000+). Contingency tables (cross-tabs) and multi- variate logistic regression are used to assess differences in reported fear levels between Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal cases. While Aboriginal rates of violent victimization are higher, there are no appreciable differences in fear levels. In some situations Non-Aboriginal Canadians are even more likely to report fear. This relationship holds even in controlled analysis for urban based Aboriginals and Non-Aboriginals. Assault does not substantially increase the fear levels of either group. Income differences between Aboriginals and Non-Aboriginals are a concern. Low income earners are more afraid, while high income earners are not. While other factors mediated some of these effects, policy makers need to direct attention to the large number of urban based, impoverished Aboriginals.