, 8 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
I am upset and angry that we have let knife crime reach record levels. There is no silver bullet for this problem but various complex factors must be urgently addressed. Ambivalence and inaction will mean more young lives are needlessly lost.
The demand for drugs - particularly cocaine - has exploded. Prices are at their lowest levels in more than 25 years. There were 432 deaths relating to the use of Class A drugs in 2017, nearly quadruple the number in 2011.
We need to get tougher on the adult gangsters and international organised criminals that exploit and pimp young teenage boys to run drugs. Instead the UK Border Force has been cut by 18% since 2012-13. Cuts to funding to both support and challenge parents also don’t help.
Local services have been savaged by cuts. Councils will see their budgets reduced by 54% from 2018-2020. Between 2012 and 2016, 600 youth centres closed, 3500 youth workers lost their jobs and 140,000 places for young people disappeared.
Neighbourhood policing - which provides a crucial link between communities and authorities - has also been dismantled. Since March 2015, the number of community support officers has fallen by 18% and 1/3 of street officers have been reassigned to other duties or left their jobs.
The Housing Crisis has created a vast polarity between different areas of London. Over the past 20 years the price of housing in London has quadrupled. Crime is highest in the deprived areas - and the number of young people in poverty is on the rise.
Social media is causing all kinds of social and mental health problems in our young people. One in four women between 16 and 24 suffer from anxiety, depression, phobias, or obsessive compulsive disorders. For young black men the context is different: it glamorises violence.
As well as a properly funded Public Health Approach, we need to provide more support for parents and urgently implement my Review. Enough lives have been wasted. We now need to radically heal Britain and cure violence before it arrives on our streets. gov.uk/government/org…
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