The Slaughterhouse, Social Disorganization, and Violent Crime in Rural Communities

In: Society & Animals
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Scholars in nonhuman animal studies and criminology have argued that more attention should be paid to the violence sanctioned by society, that of animal slaughter for industrial food production. Slaughterhouses and the communities surrounding these facilities present ideal sites for investigating how the violence of nonhuman animal slaughter work impacts individuals and society. The main research questions addressed in this study were whether the presence of a slaughterhouse in a rural community had an effect on violent crime arrest rates and what impact these facilities have on social disorganization in the community. Previous research on slaughterhouse communities has established a correlation between slaughterhouse employment and violent crime. This research examined the relationship between the presence of a slaughterhouse in the community and violent crime rates. Findings indicated that the location of a slaughterhouse in a county was associated with increases in the total arrest rate, arrests for rape, and arrests for offenses against the family in comparison to counties without a slaughterhouse, pointing to a relationship between the violence of killing nonhuman animals and violence towards humans.

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