A recent report released by a popular real estate analytics website supports an undeniable fact–New Jerseyans are leaving the state for greener cheaper and safer pastures. Three of New Jersey’s cities are among the most dangerous and worst places to live in the country. It marks the first time in recent national surveys that three cities in the Garden State ranked in the top 100 most dangerous places to live in the country at the same time.

The website www.neighborhoodscount.com ranked the cities of Camden, Trenton, and Paterson as the most dangerous places to live in the country. Out of the list of 100 American cities, Camden ranked #14; Trenton was #57, and Paterson rounded out the three in the state at #97. And Camden, earlier this year, was labeled as the “ugliest city in New Jersey” by the popular website www.travel.alot.com.

According to information from the site editors, a city had to have a minimum of 25,000 residents. The number of residents was compared to the number of violent crimes per 1,000 residents. Violent crimes include murder, rape, armed robbery, and aggravated assault. The data and statistics are compared to recent, and various FBI crime reports in each city. Residents in Camden have a 1 in 61 chance of being a victim of a violent crime. Trentonians have a 1 in 93 chance of being a victim; Paterson residents stand a 1 in 111 chance of being violently assaulted.

For some former and current city leaders in Camden, the most recent rankings and moniker are disturbing, especially since previous and current city administrators have steadfastly improved Camden’s long tarnished reputation. For example, the south Jersey hub city has consistently ranked as one of the worst places and most dangerous places to live in national surveys for years. In an interview with the South Jersey Journal, former mayor Dana Redd said, “Camden is a beautiful, vibrant city, and because it has had tough times in the past, it is and has been on the rebound.” Redd was the second African-American woman to lead Camden from 2010 to 2018, during the height of an out of control crime rate, impoverished neighborhoods, a shrinking number of employers, and record unemployment.

(Google Map Image) Camden Street in Trenton, the site of a murder in March.

And the capital city of Trenton recorded back-to-back murders of a 9-year-old girl and a 16-year-old girl earlier this month. Cash strapped and saddled with a divisive and inept City Council, the capital city remains on track this year to tie or exceed a record number of 40 murders in 2021. In a statement to the media regarding Trenton’s ranking as one of the worst and most dangerous places to live in the country, Mayor Reed Gusciora said, “Public safety continues to be a challenge for mid-size cities across the nation. As Trenton continues to reemerge from the pandemic….we hope all these conditions will improve.”

Glenn Townes

I'm an award winning journalist based in Edison, NJ. My work has been featured in dozens of publications including, Black Enterprise magazine; ESSENCE magazine and Real Health magazine. I am also a featured...

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