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  • Writer's pictureThe Youth Vote UK

Police and Crime: A Comparison of Mayor of London Candidates' Manifestos

The London mayoral elections are coming up on the 6th of May and we here at The Youth Vote UK have been producing content on all the candidates manifestos. We have decided to group policy areas together so that you can easily compare the candidates. This post is on police and crime.

Brian Rose (Independent) ‘Transform London 2021’: Make London Safe

  • Support the Metropolitan Police – more situation-based training.

  • Zero tolerance policy for knife crime and possession - all offenders prosecuted.

  • New, innovative technologies to promote a knife crime free city.

  • New community-led crime prevention strategies - address the causes of crime through programs to offer young people positive pathways.

  • Digitise the Metropolitan Police - paperless, data-driven solutions that bring cost reductions while introducing better technology and advanced AI technologies to solve crime.

  • Implement an ambitious diversity representation strategy in the Metropolitan Police - ensure all races, religions, and genders are proportionately represented.

Community-led crime prevention is an innovative way of tackling crime amongst young people, by addressing the roots and causes of crime. Rose also believes the police must be representative of society, receive greater situation-based training, and should be digitised fully to allow for more streamlined policing.

David Kurten (Independent) ‘#MakeLondonGreatAgain’: End Politically Correct Policing

  • Refocus the police

  • Make London safe again

  • Defend free speech

David says the job of the police is to catch criminals like murders, rapists, thieves etc. He thinks their attention is preoccupied with patrolling the internet to arrest people for jokes and politically correct opinions and dishing out silly fines.

By refocusing the polices’ attention, he says more of their time and resources can be spent on reducing violent crime. Between 2014 to 2019 in London, violence against the person offences, which include homicide and violence with and without injury, have increased by about 62% (using data from the Metropolitan Police’s Crime Data Dashboard) .

In addition to this to stop serious crime, he states in his campaign policies he would add 3,000 more police officers, increase stop and search, deport foreign criminals and have zero-tolerance for knife crime and carrying weapons to make London safe again.

To defend free speech, he wants to close the ‘Online Hate Crime Hub’, stop wasting police time investigating 'non-crime hate incidents' and end 'buffer zones' targeting pro-life supporters. Some abortion clinics in London have buffer zones banning protestors coming within a 100m radius and limiting their number to four at a time. Some would say the right to protest is free speech while others say it infringes people’s privacy, safety and health. David Kurten takes the former view supporting free speech.

Farah London (Independent) ‘Bring London Back’: The London Free from the Grip of Crime

  • Reverse the change to close 38 of 73 police stations

  • 6000 more police officers and special constables

  • Equipment to detect drugs and knives

  • Work closely with communities to tackle the core issues behind youth violence

  • Introduce youth empowerment initiatives

  • Improve Police pay and benefits, including private medical care

Youth crime is at the core of her policing policy and believes that the main way of tackling this issue is through more investment. She believes that by closely working with the communities and listening to their needs they will be able to come up with unique solutions to this issue.

Furthermore, she wants to introduce youth empowerment initiatives which aim at generating the next generation of ‘all-stars’.

Nims Obunge (Independent) ‘Nims for LDN’: Make London Safe

  • Zero tolerance knife and violent crime

  • Ensure Stop and Search for all

  • Deliver Youth Clubs

  • City wide recruitment of Special Police Constables

  • Eradicate modern day slavery and human trafficking from London

  • Establish Mayoral HOPE schools to address school exclusion

Crime is a central issue for Nims and is a key reason for why he is standing for London Mayor. As a faith pastor he has seen the shocking consequences of violent crime on many of London’s young people and their families. His central aim and reason for standing in the election is to tackle London’s crime and establish peace in London’s communities. His approach to this is through strengthening police powers but also establishing better community links and opportunities for London’s youth, so that they are not drawn to crime. Nims believes that giving young people opportunities, so they are not forced to turn to criminal activity, is the best solution to crime in London.

Dr. Peter Gammons (UKIP) ‘Peter’s 6 Key Policies for A Better, Safer, London For All’: A Safer London

  • People Before Politics

  • Defend Not Defund the Police – Recruit 4000 New Officers

  • Tough on Crime

  • One Law for All – End Two-Tier Policing

  • Increased Youth Centres & Projects

  • Immediate Action on Cladding

Three quarters of young black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) people think they and their communities are targeted unfairly by stop and search. Dr Peter Gammons believes that the relationship between BAME communities and the police can be improved by having the police be more reflective of the community’s ethnic demographic. By having more BAME police officers the police may be able to build better relationships and re-establish trust within certain communities.

Proposes the use of handheld metal detectors (like airports) instead of ‘more invasive’ ‘stop and search’. This is another policy aimed at improving the perception of the police.

Dr Peter Gammons also wants to make carrying weapons a more serious offence. He believes this will act as a deterrence.

Furthermore, he wants to invest into youth services as he acknowledges the relationship between youth service cuts and rise in violent gang culture and believes increased investment will hopefully reduce violent crime in London.

Sadiq Khan (Labour) ‘Standing Up for London’: Policing and Crime

  • Campaigning against Tory police cuts

  • Created the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU)

  • Combining specialists from health, police, local government, probation and community organisations to tackle violent crime and the underlying causes of violent crime

  • 1,300 extra police officers by increasing council tax by 26p a week

  • £45 million Young Londoners Fund

  • helping children and young people to fulfil their potential, particularly those at risk of getting caught up in crime

  • Supporting a range of education, sport, cultural and other activities for young Londoners

  • Sport Unites

  • Mayor’s flagship community sport programme

  • programme harnesses the power of sport bringing people from different backgrounds together – strengthening communities whilst improving the physical and mental health of all Londoners

Sadiq Khan’s primary focus is to reduce violent crime, especially youth crime. His tactic is prevention, through investment in youth services. He is doing this in multiple ways: The Young Londoners Fund, 1,300 extra police officers and the VRU.

Various professors of criminology have argued that there is a distinct link between austerity and the rise in violent crime. James Treadwell of Staffordshire University suggests that this is not solely due to the reduction to the police budget, but rather a result of the criminal justice system as a whole under austerity.

Shaun Bailey (Conservative) ‘Shaun’s Plan for London’: Make London Safe

  • Hire 8,000 extra police

  • Invest in youth services to help young people get out of crime and into work

  • Tackle drug use and drug crime

Hiring 8,000 police officers in London fits the current Conservative government’s pledge to try and reduce serious crime across the country by hiring 20,000 police officers. For example, youth knife crime is a huge issue in London. In 2019, police statistics stated 41% of those caught with a knife across London were aged between 15 and 19. He believes this, plus investing in youth services which aims at getting young people into work should reduce serious crime and improve the local economy.

He also wants to try to use this increase of police numbers to tackle drug gangs that exploit children to spread the illegal trade in the capital.

The Policy and News Analysis Team

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