Sadiq Khan and Met Police take action to keep Londoners safe this Easter

The Mayor of London and the Metropolitan Police will today announce a joint approach to tackling violence during the Easter holidays with hundreds of positive activities for young Londoners on offer and an increased police presence around public spaces and transport hubs.

While the police will be stepping up activity this Easter, City Hall has published online updated details of hundreds of activities available for young Londoners across the capital during the holidays and beyond – from theatre workshops, sports programmes and music sessions to coding clubs and cooking classes.

The Mayor has already announced that the next round of his Young Londoners Fund will open next month, with an additional £15 million available for projects and programmes to support young people fulfil their potential and help those at risk of getting involved in crime.

In May, the next wave of funding will be available with applications open for youth organisations, charities and schools to bid for a share of the £45m fund. 

Last year, Sadiq invested £20.5m in 179 projects benefitting more than 66,000 young people in London. And there are hundreds of activities for young Londoners to get involved in over the Easter holidays – many of which are funded by City Hall.

Today, the Mayor, Sadiq Khan, joins officers from the Met’s Stratford town centre team who have been working with businesses and retailers to clamp down on violence and anti-social behaviour in the town and shopping centre. Following a sustained targeting of repeat offenders by the team and the Violent Crime Taskforce, crime dropped by 40 per cent in a four-month period at the end of last year.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I’m determined to lead from the front to tackle violent crime in our city – supporting the police as they focus on arresting violent offenders while we tackle the root causes.

“But I have always been clear that we can’t arrest our way out of this issue alone. The causes of violent crime are extremely complex and involve deep-seated problems like poverty, inequality, social alienation and a lack of opportunities for young people. I have created a £45m Young Londoners Fund to provide young people with positive alternatives to crime and there are hundreds of activities available this Easter to help Londoners get out of gangs and violence and into employment and training.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Graham McNulty, said: “Violent crime has been reducing, which is very positive news. However, with schools off for the Easter holidays, we expect to see an increase of people in public spaces, particularly if the weather is good. So to ensure young people can enjoy the break safely, the Met will be working closely with our partners in an uplift of activity to tackle public-place violence, with a particular focus on hot-spot areas in and around transport hubs.

“Officers from across the Met will continue to work hard to tackle violent crime, including the Met’s Roads and Transport Unit and the Violent Crime Taskforce, who will be working with British Transport Police to target areas where violence, knife carrying and drug dealing is known to occur. Activities will include Automated Number Plate Recognition led operations, increased police presence around bus stops, train stations and other transport hubs, the deployment of knife arches and execution of intelligence-led warrants.

“This activity is in addition to our ongoing work across the organisation to reduce violence, which includes regular stop and search patrols, weapon sweeps, and a range of prevention and diversion work within schools, pupil referral units and custody suites.

“As always, we ask that public help us out by being our eyes and ears, and reporting any concerns, or information about crime to police. If you do not want to speak to police, you can contact independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Young people can contact Fearless, who are part of the Crimestoppers charity, to access advice and pass on information. You could help save a life.” 

This enforcement activity will back up the diversionary work on offer for young people. Details of projects available across every borough can be found on City Hall’s interactive online map at Activities stretch the length and breadth of the capital, but especially in the 10 boroughs most affected by knife and violent crime.

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