Liverpool is ‘crying out’ for youth centres to tackle knife crime

With the general election looming, we went to find out how the people of North Liverpool think the next government could help tackle the problem of knife crime in our country.

We were told by many people in the Rice Lane area and around Walton Hall Park that the constituency desperately needs more youth centres to give kids and teenagers things to do, keeping them off the streets and out of trouble.

One woman told The ECHO: "It's clear to us all, the area is crying out for places for kids to go and have fun." Residents added that the the youth centres needed to be free of charge so all kids had an equal opportunity to attend.

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Several people had strong views about how knife crime can be tackled, including prison time for possession. The time frame varied from two, five to even 10 years, but the notion of prison sentences for being found with a knife was certainly a popular one in the area.

The relative ease with which people can get hold of knives was a real concern for one woman we spoke to. She said: “They just get them online; how can you stop that?”

The same woman told us that the knife crime pandemic in the UK is a result of a wider lack of discipline among young people. This notion was also backed by a man who claimed that Rishi Sunak’s National Service policy could be the key to solving the knife crime issue.

From some of the younger people we spoke to, it became apparent that in order to solve the knife crime issue, policy makers and law enforcement officials must actually understand the mindset of the people who carry knives.

One man told us: “Most people just carry knives to protect themselves from other people with knives.” However, the same man stated: “If you carry a knife, you’re a coward.”

Following the general election on July 4 it is clear that whichever party forms a government, they will have plenty of work to do to solve the UK’s knife crime problem

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