End Knife Crime In The UK
End Knife Crime In The UK
There is nothing new about knife crime: sharp objects, blades and knives have been used as weapons for thousands of years.
But after falling for several years, knife crime in England and Wales is rising again. So what is happening?
There were 40,147 offences in the 12 months ending in March 2018, a 16% increase on the previous year and the highest number since 2011, the earliest point for which comparable data is available.
Out of the 44 police forces, 38 recorded a rise in knife crime since 2011.
Police figures are prone to changes in counting rules and methods, but data for NHS hospitals in England over a similar period showed a 7% increase in admissions for assault by a sharp object, leading the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to conclude there had been a "real change" to the downward trend in knife crime.
The explanations for rising knife crime have ranged from police budget cuts, to gang violence and disputes between drug dealers.
Some have also cited the steep decline in the use by police of stop and search.
The powers enable officers to search people on the street if they have reasonable grounds to suspect they may be carrying weapons, illegal drugs, stolen property or items to be used to commit a crime. People can also be searched without reasonable grounds if a senior officer believes there's a risk of serious violence in a particular area.
From 2009, the number of stops has been falling across England and Wales, especially in London, primarily because of concerns that the measures unfairly targeted young black men, wasted police resources and were ineffective at catching criminals.
Theresa May, as home secretary, led efforts to drive down the number of stops, but there's anecdotal evidence from police that young people are now more inclined to carry knives because of growing confidence they won't be stopped.
And seems to be happening most in my area... Across England and Wales an incident involving a blade or sharp object takes place, on average, every 14 minutes. Of the 37,000 incidents in the past 12 months, more than 13,000 offences were committed in London. London has also seen a staggering 56% rise in knife crime over the last year.
So many people are being attacked when there is a lot that could be done. In the last week alone, 5 people were killed. And at least two of them were teenagers - like me. No wonder so many people are now carrying knives...
Something needs to be done. Seriously.
Get a life. Not a knife.