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Knife Crime Rise shows Public Health Approach “not optional but vital” for Derbyshire, says Kate Smith, Lib Dem Police & Crime Commissioner Candidate

May 20, 2020 10:13 PM

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Figures released in Spring 2020 by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) on knife crime in England and Wales are striking, with the incidence in Derbyshire having almost doubled in eight years.

Before Coronavirus, hundreds of lives were already being taken by the epidemic of violence, many of them children. Too many people feel unsafe walking on their own streets. The Conservative approach has failed, with successive Home Secretaries too busy trying to seem tough on knife crime to do the hard work of actually preventing it. They cut Police numbers, and failed to provide properly the services that help people build lives free from crime.

Kate Smith, the Liberal Democrats' candidate for Derbyshire PCC says "We are calling for a proper Public Health approach to tackle the blight of serious violence. The Government must restore community Policing and youth services."

"Once the immediate Coronavirus crisis has abated, we urgently need to bring Police, teachers, health professionals, youth workers and social services together to prevent young people falling prey to gangs and violence. That's how to make our communities safer and help everyone to stop fearing for their and their families' safety".

NOTES

(1) The frequency of incidents involving a knife or sharp instrument in the Derbyshire Police Force Area increased from 365 in the Year Ending December 2011 to 610 in the Year Ending December 2019, according to the ONS. (It is important to note that this is before Coronavirus became widespread and before Lockdown.)

(2) To some extent multi-agency working is already taking place in our Police Force Area, including MARACs (Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conferences) around and for young people. However, assessing risk and acting on it are not the same, and action has been hampered in recent years by resource constraints, reduced Police numbers and lack of imaginative planning. Treating violence among young people as a Public Health issue has been shown to work successfully elsewhere in the UK, notably in Glasgow.

For more information please contact katesmithlibdem@gmail.com .