Gang crimes down in EastLondonLines boroughs, prompting Mayor’s Office to invest in victim services

People loitering in a bus stop. Pic: Matthew

People loitering in a bus stop. Pic: Matthew

The number of cases related to gang offences has fallen by over 60 per cent in ELL boroughs since January 2013, according to a report released by the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC).

There were a total 313 gang-related offences between 2014 and 2015, compared to 505 cases in the same time frame from 2012 to 2013.

Croydon has seen the biggest decline in gang crime, falling from 157 cases in January 2013 to 64 cases in January 2015.

MOPAC announced £600,000 of funding will be used for a project to put specialist youth workers into four hospital’s major trauma centres (MTC’s) in London, including The Royal London Hospital in Tower Hamlets. Redthread, a youth charity that provides support to victims of violence and trauma, will run the project.

John Poyton, Chief Executive at Redthread, said: “We’re very excited to receive funding from the Mayor’s office to expand Redthread’s service, which we developed in partnership with King’s College Hospital over the last nine years, to young people across all four major trauma centres in London.”

“The additional funding will enable our specialist youth workers to provide vital support to more young people in the ‘teachable moment’ when the crisis of injury creates a window of opportunity to re-evaluate their future. Redthread works to help young people break their devastating cycle of violence which is so detrimental to countless vulnerable individuals, heartbroken families and concerned communities.”

It has been proven that engaging with victims of gang crime at critical moments increases the chances of those involved in gangs to leave violent lifestyles behind and helps break the cycle of reoffending. Young girls and women who have been sexually exploited and abused by gangs, or trapped into criminal activity, will also be provided with specialist support.

Stephen Greenhalgh, deputy mayor for Policing and Crime, said: “Gang crime is falling and the police will continue to crack-down hard on gangs to keep London safe.  But we know that stopping gang violence is about more than just policing – we also have to help those who want to exit gangs and leave violence behind.”

“Working in collaboration with the NHS and the criminal justice system, this vital service will offer young victims of violent crime close personal support in their hour of need.  Supporting these young people who are stabbed or shot from the moment they arrive in hospital is part of our comprehensive plan to combat gang crime in our capital city.”

The MOPAC funding will allow the service to reach out to almost 4,000 people within the areas of the four major trauma centres.


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