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Labour candidate calls for crackdown on knife crime

This week, Labour's candidate for Bournemouth West, Jessica Toale, spoke to the Bournemouth Echo about what more can be done to tackle knife crime.

This followed an announcement by government that it would be introducing new legislation to ban zombie knives and increase sentences for manufacturing and importing knives.

Jessica said:

"The government has finally woken up to the knife crime problem affecting communities across the country. However this is the sixth time the Conservatives have promised to ban zombie knives, and it is disappointing that there is no clear timeline for legislation. ‘When Parliamentary time allows’ is generally a fob off which means it is at the back of the queue.

While efforts to tackle knife crime are welcome, changes to the law are not the only things we need to see. We have seen a rise in serious violent crime, including amongst young people, across the country as a result of rising poverty, unemployment, poor mental health and a lack of youth services.

Recently I’ve met parents who have been forced to take their kids out of after school clubs because they can no longer afford them, and they are worried about their well-being. I'd like to see efforts made to address all these areas if we are to fully reassure parents and our communities, and ensure no more young lives are lost to such senseless and preventable violence.

Labour has been clear on this. It is one of our missions to halve knife crime. Crucially, we have committed to getting more police on our streets to tackle crime and antisocial behaviour. We have also pledged to ease the cost-of-living pressures faced by families, including by providing breakfast clubs in all schools and to provide mental health support in schools."

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