Afzal Sayed Munna : I would like to say a huge thanks to Patsy McKie, founding member of Mothers Against Violence from Manchester who lost her son in violence. She is doing an amazing job along with others to create awareness and how we as parents can take control of the situation through education. Many of us are now very worried about the recent incidents happening and how London is turning into a violent city. More than 50 people have been killed in violent attacks in London in 2018. Mayor of London Mr Sadiq Khan has announced that, the crime rate is now crossing the level comparing to USA. He also mentioned in his recent interview with Newham Recorder that, an independent research by Home Office shows that police cuts have played a role in the increase in violent crime across Britain. He also mentioned, he believes that this is not the only reason and there are much to do in case of creating awareness and thus he is planning to hosting a cross party summit to discuss rising violent crime in the capital. He also believe increasing the Stop and Search measure could also play a vital role in spotting possible violence in advance.
I would also like to say a massive thanks to Newham and Hackney Mayoral candidate from Liberal Democrats Gareth Evans and Pauline Pearce for their recent request to act and deploy the Glasgow Style to stop and minimise the rate of violence in the capital city. I also believe the measure of considering the crime as medical emergency what has worked well in Glasgow, where the number of homicides has dropped by almost half since 2007 would work very well here in London as well.
In Glasgow they adopted a public health model, which means everybody has to work together. It is absolutely not just a policing issue, it involves everybody: schools, communities, hospitals and prisons to work together to tackle the epidemic situation. I also believe all these are great initiatives, which would help reduce the rate of crime in the city however, would not be the only solution at all. We need to think of something, which can work in grass root level and help eradicate the primary cause of all this problems. We need to think and consider the problem as a major social problem and also need to take the measure to find a real life solution for this. Working in education for last 10 years made me believe the solution is nothing but education. Only education can provide the solution for this long lasting social problem. Education for all is not working very well as we are failing to endorse the social and moral benefits of education. Our education system is also to be blamed equally as we only consider education to be a weapon to prepare our children’s for corporation. We have no such segments in our education system, which deals with the social and moral aspects of individuals and thus does not analyse the real cause of the great number of school dropouts. Many of us are now blaming the kids for being violent and getting involved in various crimes. But no one wants to consider the real cause to blame. A simple cause-benefit analysis can provide the real solution for this problem. Let’s imaging if the parents are not educated with appropriate level of moral, social and theoretical aspects they would not understand the benefits of life and value of individual power. Thus they would not be able to provide appropriate moral and social education to their children’s. When these kids remain out of education for long and do not find themselves engaged in the society they have nothing to do but getting involved in drugs, which leads this ultimate crime. So the education starts from family not from the society that’s what I believe. Society then needs to create great opportunity open for these young peoples to explore and exercise their true potentials. Which then becomes a government policy making for the entire community and as a whole for the entire nation. Now tell me whom to blame? -Kids, parents, society or government? If we are educated then we definitely understand the resources are limited however, as an educated person we do know how to make the best utilisation of those resources.
Thus in line of my political campaign I was urging council to establish an Entrepreneurship and Creative Skills Centres in every borough so that we can bring all our young generation to practice their potentials and learn soft skills of life which would they bring back to the community in future. This would not only bring the young’s to life long learning is various soft skills but also would keep them out of these dangerous violent acts.
I propose a detail plan to use primarily in the following ways to fulfil the needs to reduce the crime and eradicate the causes in full in near future.
To raise public awareness of knife and gun crime
To educate children of all ages of the consequences of knife and gun crime and the devastating effect that it has on families
To build Entrepreneurship and Creative Skills Centres
The primary and secondary schools can start organising choices and consequences workshop every week to create awareness among the schools children’s. The community centres including religious and faith groups can do the similar things. Through our Entrepreneurship and Creative Skills Centres we can provide sessions on additional support to 13-19 year-olds to build up their self-concept to enable them to make more positive lifestyle choices as part of self-esteem and confidence building program. Through schools, community centres and Entrepreneurship and Creative Skills Centres we can empower parents and carers to develop different approaches to help them work with their child to produce a positive impact. The Entrepreneurship and Creative Skills Centres should also develop and provide resources for teachers, practitioners and young people. And finally we should also keep continue the support for victims and anyone affected by knife and gun crime.
There is no one best solution for this problem but surely and definitely Education can make the society more open, tolerant and united. With the power of education we are much more stronger for a fairer society that we want to be proud of.
Afzal Sayed Munna
Doctoral Researcher and Liberal Democrats Activist & Campaigner