Hosted by Liberal Democrat Councillor and London Assembly Candidate Hini Bokhari and held at ProspeX, the panel included Beef Frankland of ProspeX, Josh Babarinde from Award-winning social enterprise ‘Cracked It’, and Cameron Thorp from the Met Police.
The most memorable moments came when a lady in the front row was called on to speak. She rose to her feet, moved her glasses to the top of her head and in a quiet voice spoke of how her own boy had been killed just weeks before.
When she finished a young girl in school uniform then stood up in the back row, cheeks wet with tears, and talked of how her young cousin’s life was also recently taken.
Two voices which said more than any statistics can about the reality of knife crime, the 130 people killed in London in 2018 while 75% knife crime remains unprosecuted and the London Mayor speaks of needing a decade to solve.
So what more can be done? Solutions discussed on the night included: more funding for youth services, more volunteers to mentor young adults and more visits by families of victims of crime in schools.
Things we can help with now, that don’t take ten years.
At the end of the evening, the schoolgirl walked over to the mother and they embraced. The girl then asked her to visit her school so together they could tell their stories. The mother immediately agreed.