Gentrification In Washington Heights

Decent Essays
Gentrification has disadvantages on housing but may lead to healthier outcomes for the residents. The Department of Health surveyed the community’s smoking, diet and physical activity, which are risks factors for a variety of health problems like high blood pressure. It was concluded that Washington Heights had 12% smokers, which is lower than New York’s average. However, 31% of community members consume multiple drinks with high sugar content on a daily basis and are less likely to perform physical activity. The rate of stroke hospitalization, is higher in Washington Heights than City rates. Healthcare providers as well as the system needs to target these trends as well as making health care more access to the community. The Affordable Health…show more content…
In the 1960s through 1990s, the Urban Crisis and Crack Epidemic had reached its peak and Washington Heights was one of the central areas of the crisis. It was referred to as “the crack and murder capital of the city” (Snyder, 2015). This low-income area was susceptible to the influx of drug distribution and abuse. America’s “War on Drugs” criminalized drug use, but was ineffective in resolving the issue. It also was a factor in alienated the police from the community. The city was ambivalent in their course of action as conservatives and liberals were at odds. Conservatives supposed the only solution was to allow the police to take control and eradicate the crime. Liberals believed that this was not a viable solution and the true issue was inequality (Snyder,…show more content…
It was activists from the wealthy and poor blocks that organized to reduce crime. These tenant activists involved city agencies and lending organizers to work to create a better a community (Snyder, 2015). The residences formed a relationship with their local police to implement social control that worked this its environment. They identified the need for formal social control as informal social control activism was not enough. The community began to bridge the gap between policy and the neighborhood. Through community activism, Washington Heights continued to see a decline in crime and the start of gentrification. Today, Washington Heights has one of the lowest crime rates in New York City and the borough of Manhattan (NYC Police, 2017). The community’s relationship with the New York City Police Department is not perfect. Areas that are predominantly people of color or lower socioeconomic status do face barriers in working with police. However, this is not an isolated issue as most of the country, especially people of color, have a negative relationship with police members. It seems to be a systemic problem within the police and how social control should be enforced. Washington Heights is an example of how communities and law enforcement can come together to change a neighborhood. Washington Heights is a community that serves and is shaped by the residences as it is home to many immigrants.
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