Residents in Cardiff are worried about the rising knife crime rate it was revealed at public husting.
People were given the chance to grill parliamentary candidates on key issues ahead of the general election in Riverside, and one of the main concerns that were raised was the spike in knife crime amongst the youth.
“Knife crime has risen from 2011, with 704 incidents, an increase of 82%,” said Yumi, one attendee who is concerned about the rising knife crime amongst the youth.
Recent figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that the past five years have seen a rise in recorded sharp objects offences. From 41,000 to 44,000 just over the last 12 months.
“It is absolutely crucial that young people are supported,” said Stephen Doughty of Labour, in response to rising of knife crime. “Police Resources are absolutely stretched”. In response to the report reveals that the highest number of victims are young, suggesting they are aged between 16 and 24.
In the wake of the UK election which is due to take place next week on December the 12th, parliamentary candidates from the parties: Plaid Cymru, Labour, Green Party, Lib, and Democrats came together in order to debate key issues and take questions from the floor.
Each of the candidates had 2 minutes to carry forward their case on behalf of their respective parties. The topics debated were important for local residents:
- Youth and Education
- Housing Crisis
- Islamophobia and Discrimination
- Mental Health
- Knife Crime and Policing
There was a wide diversity of people who attended the meeting and who were listening to the candidates. People were nodding eagerly along when the candidates were speaking. Once the floor was open for questions, many eagerly raised their hands.
“What are the plans for tackling discrimination amongst local communities?” asked an attendee. With 15% of the population in Cardiff is a non-white ethnic minority. Discrimination and Islamophobia are another important topic and perhaps close to heart amongst the residents of Cardiff.
“We need to listen to other communities who have more experience in this matter,” said Dan Schmeissing of Lib Dems.
The public debate was hosted at Riverside Warehouse in association with EYST (Ethnic Minorites and Youth Support) Wales, Hayaat Women Trust, Housing and Development Association and Amah.
“Next time, can we make sure that there is a more equal gender representation,” said one of the attendees with a smile nodding to the all-male panel at the end of the hearing.
The General Election is to be held on Thursday the 12th of December.