Stemming The Tide : Britain's Knife Crime Crisis (2018-Present)
In the 12 months ending March 2018, 285 people lost their lives as a result of knife crime in the UK. This figure is the highest number recorded since the Home Office Homicide Index began in 1946. 132 of those who died were killed in London, the highest recording made in 10 years. Figures linked to homicide do not usually vary significantly from year-to-year, which is why this steep increase in figures is particularly striking.
Between 2010 and 2017, numbers of police officers fell by more than 20,000, with this sharp decrease leading those living in areas worst affected to begin feeling that much of the blame had began to lie within a justice system that was, ultimately, failing its young people. Cuts to policing have undoubtedly coincided with the rapid increase in knife offences. In spite of this, many point to a far wider set of factors, with no stand-alone element being to blame for such violence taking place on what has now become a daily basis. Rather, a multitude of internal and external influences are to be understood and addressed before any significant changes can be made.
These images serve as a visual exploration of the British knife crime epidemic through the documentation of the inner-city landscape, with pretences surrounding geographical boundaries being broken down by these photographs, gradually ceasing to exist. In addition to the recording of individual cases, this work seeks to serve as an uncensored platform for those who have been directly affected by knife crime, as well as those that are actively looking to fight it, to have their stories heard.