Stabbings up 50% under Labour
Posted by Jamie at 9 16 PM on Saturday, February 27
STABBINGS of children have gone up an astonishing 150 PER CENT under the Labour government, the News of the World can reveal.
Each week the equivalent of an entire SCHOOL CLASS — more than 20 kids — ends up in hospital with knife injuries in England alone.
And one child younger than 10 is rushed to A&E with stab wounds every single week, shock new figures show.
Ministers insist they are taking action to tackle the scourge. But writing in the News of the World below, former EastEnders star Brooke Kinsella — whose brother Ben, 16, was stabbed to death on a London street in 2008 — insists the government must do MORE to halt the bloody epidemic.
She pleads: “My brother is now just another statistic. I pray every night that somebody else’s brother doesn’t become one too.”
The Ministry of Justice will next week publish the latest figures for knife crime. But official statistics given to parliament show 1,079 under-16s suffered stab wounds in 2008-9 — up from 431 in 1998-9, the year after Labour took over.
The government has attempted to tackle the problem and in 2007 new laws were brought in making it illegal to sell knives to under-18s.
In 2008, ministers announced that anyone over 16 caught with a knife should be prosecuted rather than simply cautioned.
But a campaign of shock tactics — in which youths were shown graphic images of stab wounds to frighten them off carrying blades — was branded a £7 million flop.
Since the crackdown was launched in June 2008, the number of victims treated in hospital has actually gone UP. And since 1998 there have been just SIX cautions for selling knives to under-age kids. Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling said: “There is still a deep-rooted knife culture in many of our communities and we have to get to grips with it.”
MURDERED Jimmy Mizen will be remembered in a “peace service” at Westminster Cathedral on the second anniversary of his death on May 10 — the day after what would have been his 18th birthday.
The family of the teenager, whose throat was cut in a bakery in south-east London, are also hoping to stage a charity pop gig at London’s O2 Indigo Lounge. Any acts who would like to perform can contact Tommy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BROOKE KINSELLA WRITES
THESE statistics will shock, but we must remember they’re not just numbers — they are actual people, actual lives that have been lost forever.
Violent crime doesn’t only destroy the lives of the victims and the perpetrators, it spreads devastation so wide it’s impossible to say how many it affects.
Having lost my brother Ben at 16 when he should have been just beginning his life, I am a true victim of knife crime. I have lost the chance to be a big sister, to see him grow up, to be successful, to meet the love of his life.
I have lost the chance to be an auntie to his children.
But I am not the only one who suffers from this loss. His family, his friends, everyone he met as well as those who did it, their family, their friends — they all lose something too. The list is endless.
Statistics mean little to me, it’s life that is precious. And the govern- ment — whichever party’s in power after the Election — must do all they can to make a change. Whether it be tougher laws or sentences, more education or rehabilitation, no amount of money, time or effort should be spared on making our streets safer.
My brother is now just another statistic. I pray every night somebody else’s brother doesn’t become one too.