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POLL: Majority Of Portland Residents Think City Is ‘Very Unsafe’ After Dark, Want More Cops

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Out of 600 Portland residents surveyed, over 50% of them think the city is “very unsafe” after dark and want more police officers on duty, a new poll found. 

In response to a question about feeling safe in downtown Portland at night, 53% of respondents stated that they would feel “very unsafe,” a dramatic uptick from the 16% that would feel “very unsafe” during the day, a poll for Oregonian/OregonLive found. Forty-two percent of respondents said that the city is “much less safe” than it was 12 months ago, according to the poll.

PORTLAND, OR - APRIL 17: Protesters watch a structure fire, set following the police shooting of a homeless man on April 17, 2021 in Portland, Oregon. The shooting comes amid heightened tensions between police and activists as the country awaits a verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin. (Photo by Nathan Howard/Getty Images)

PORTLAND, OR – APRIL 17: Protesters watch a structure fire, set following the police shooting of a homeless man on April 17, 2021 in Portland, Oregon. The shooting comes amid heightened tensions between police and activists as the country awaits a verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin. (Photo by Nathan Howard/Getty Images)

Over 60% of respondents reported that they visit downtown Portland less due to “concerns about safety,” “concerns about people who are homeless living downtown” and “concerns about protests.” (RELATED: It Took Six Months Of Rioting, Millions In Property Damage For Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler To Escalate Law Enforcement Efforts Against Antifa)

Respondents also noted disapproval of the way city government has handled various issues. 54% “strongly disapprove” of how Portland’s mayor and city council handled the homeless population and 55% “strongly disapprove” of how they managed protests. 50% of respondents also note that they believe there should be an increase in police presence downtown.

A note about the poll: The poll was commissioned by @oregonian, and conducted by @DHMresearch, a respected polling firm that selected a representative sample of 600 adults across the four-county metro area via phone and online. (1/3)

— The Oregonian (@Oregonian) May 18, 2021

Fifty-one percent of the interviews were over the phone while the other 49% were conducted online, according to the poll. The margin of error rate was plus or minus 4% and results were adjusted to fit the view of different demographics across the Portland metro area, according to the poll. 

The poll had 40 questions, including two about increasing, decreasing or holding steady the police presence in downtown Portland and Portland broadly. You can view the questions asked, demographic breakdown and more here: https://t.co/lpm0BmaAHC (3/3)

— The Oregonian (@Oregonian) May 18, 2021

Qualities like gender, race and ethnicity, education level, county of residence, household income and more were self-reported and DHM experts followed up to make sure that the sample reflected the Portland metro area. 

Portland saw several riots during the summer of 2020 following the death of George Floyd. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler asked the city council in March for $2 million expenditure for police months after the city cut roughly $16 million from their budget.