Newham Council is launching an inquiry into gang and youth crime as figures show that the number of victims has increased significantly in the past five years.
Figures from the London Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime revealed there were 331 victims of serious youth violence in the borough for the year 2015-16. Across the whole of London the annual figure was 6,290 victims.
Serious youth violence as defined by the Metropolitan Police, includes gun and knife crime, robbery, sexual offences and violence against another person under the age of 19.
Speaking after the Mayor of London pledged £400k to help tackle youth violence, a spokeswoman for Community Links said: “The new funding from the Mayor is welcome. However working alongside young offenders, we need to act earlier and address the wider unemployment, housing insecurity and poverty issues which blight the lives of many young people and too often push them towards violence and crime.”
Intervention by the local council has been welcomed by MPs and charity workers across the borough of Newham. MP for East Ham Stephen Timms said: “I hope the result of the inquiry will be an effective response involving the council, the police, and local voluntary agencies, so that the number of young people dragged into gang violence can be kept low.”