Boring.Ugly. Crime Ridden…on and on and on, people drone about their opinions of Salem Oregon.
I participate on an online forum and someone was asking about Portland, Salem and Corvallis. He was really interested in Salem and wanted to know how walkable it was. I felt like the lone ranger in talking about the core neighborhoods around town and felt the only real barrier was grocery shopping for those big items. I was shot down by people that hadn’t lived in Salem in 15 years, but heck…they know what it is like here now.
Where is my rambling going?
Something nice happened. As many negative posters as there were, the POSITIVE Salemites came out of the wood work and said they liked living here. Yeah, Salemites. This is a rare occurrence on a forum and I was so excited to have other people who enjoy the slow pace of Salem. Now any of you that have read by ugly ducking to swan posts know that Salem isn’t this amazing cultural mecca or nightclub hotspot. By that standard we are indeed dull.
Then I read this recent post about the 10 most dangerous cities. I, of course, scrolled for our familiar Oregon cities and was nicely surprised because Salem had a lower crime rate than Eugene in 2009. QR Press created a list based on the FBI’s 2009 crime data. I went to the raw data just to verify their data and this is how things stack up for Oregon cities with more than 50,000 residents.
Crimes committed per 100 residents for Oregon cities
- Eugene 12
- Portland 10.6
- Salem 8.8
- Medford 8.7
- Gresham 8.5
- Corvallis 6.9
- Bend 5.2
- Hillsboro 4.2
- Beaverton 3.8
When I looked at cities up and down the coast from Washington to California that were similar sized to Salem, they were generally between 6.0-6.5 crimes per 100 residents. There is still work to be done in the city of Salem, but for the first time, to my knowledge, we had a lower crime rate than Eugene. That, my friends, rocks.
If you are considering relocating to Salem Oregon get the real time scoop on crime stats at Crime Reports.