Thursday, March 15, 2007

Building Safer Neighbourhoods

The Safer Neighbourhoods Team in Southwark have got an innovative way of keeping people safe. They're advised not to leave their houses when the kids are leaving a Church of England comprehensive.

Councillor John Friary, who represents Camberwell Green on Southwark council, said: "I don't think Archbishop Michael Ramsey is an exceptionally bad school. I believe the problem can be solved."

(AMR is the alma mater of the late Michael Dosunmu)

Sergeant David Gwyther, from the safer neighbourhoods team, told the meeting the troublemakers numbered around 40 or 50 and he was not going to try to shut down the school.

He said: "Staying inside between 3.30pm and 4.15pm is something you are going to have to learn to do.

"We have got to accept there is going to be a certain amount of disorder in a teenage environment.

"The problem has changed over the years. Messing about by the parade of shops has turned into problems on the buses and postcode gangsterism - the boys from Peckham have got a problem with the boys from Brixton."

Labour councillor John Friary has a blog, with a small post on the meeting. While I don't get the impression that the Brandon residents problems rank terribly high compared with making Southwark a Fair Trade Borough, with a police attitude like that his options are limited. Looks like they've given up on the idea of maintaining the law in any other than a reactive sense.

I wonder if Peel's Nine Principles of Policing get a mention at Bramshill or anywhere else other than as a historical curiosity. Here's number three again :

"To recognize always that the test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, and not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with them."

And Sergeant Gwyther :

"We have got to accept there is going to be a certain amount of disorder in a teenage environment."

(hat-tip - Dumb Jon)

Let's head west to Hammersmith Grove, where I spent 6 months working back in the eighties. Another place to get indoors when the schools are emptying ?

A boy of 16 was stabbed to death by a gang of teenage boys and girls for his dog, according to police.

The group of attackers were dressed in school uniforms and were shouting "kill him, kill him" as they pursued him.

One woman said: "I saw eight or nine black boys in a very agitated state. One of them was waving a massive knife around. These boys were very hyped up. I recognised one of them as being a well-known local gang member. These kids were all gravitating around the boy with the carving knife.

" These children were much younger than the boy they were chasing. The attackers were all wearing dark blue or black school uniforms. They were really going for this boy even though he was bigger and older than them.

"They were shouting so loudly that they set a car alarm off. There was so much hatred in the way they were attacking him, you could tell it was more serious.

"At one point they surrounded their victim. He managed to free himself from the group and he was backing away from them.

"He was walking backwards facing them because he was obviously scared to turn his back to them. He looked terrified. He was black, aged 16, and had a dog with him."

The victim was named locally as Kodjo. The woman continued: "These boys wanted Kodjo's dog. They had been threatening him and bullying him for weeks. That is what it was about.

"These gang members like to boast about their dogs. They breed them to fight each other and they wanted Kodjo's dog. He wouldn't give it to them.

"He was trying to keep them away from it when they attacked him." One of the dead boy's friends blamed the killing on a turf war between rival gangs in the Shepherd's Bush-White City area.

Winnie Clements, 17, said: "They are trying to make a point - show who is bigger, who is better. It's just stupid. It needs to stop. Everyone is getting fed up." One witness said the gang involved calls itself MDP - Murder Dem Pussies.

Interesting little sidelight from hip young media thing Emily Rose (not her real name), quoted in Life Style Extra.

"It's heightened my paranoia. I'm happy we don't have young kids or anything.

"I'm surprised this has happened. It does make me feel a little unsafe. It was in the daytime, and it's one of those things, even if it's gang related it could affect a passerby.

"I just want to feel safe for my family and not have to worry when my mum goes to the deli."

It's not just in terraced streets full of Mirpuris that social cohesion - or lack of - is an issue.


Anonymous said...

Lasban, what does a 'street full of Mirpuris' mean?

Anonymous said...

Boys from Brixton & Peckham...

Hmmm I rather get the feeling they are from rather further afield than that.

Not that could have anything to do with the problems.

Laban said...

The Muslims of Bradford and Dewsbury are mostly from the Mirpur area of Kashmir.

(ignore the BBC lies about the merchant navy - the vast majority are there as a result of the textile workers who came in the 1960s)

Anonymous said...

As little as 50 years ago, we were a sweet, cohesive country. Because we were connected by race. Of course, there were terrible people,like Myra Hindley, but people were appalled and disturbed.

Now primitive Somalis, who haven't invented a single thing or a single technogical advance in all of human history, are in our country by the invitation of Tony Blair's destructive agenda and are imperially demanding free services from the British who, with similar Western minds, invented every single technological advance the world has enjoyed.

I believe all people are equal before the law and impartial judges of whatever race - but some people have a long way to go to reach our level of civilisation.

Anonymous said...

If the police have effectively surrendered control of the streets, than martial law seems to be the solution.

Oh, wait - I forgot we don't actually have any army any more and the handful of under equipped troops we do have would be seriously out-gunned on the "home front"

Anonymous said...

"Looks like they've given up on the idea of maintaining the law in any other than a reactive sense."

And if this is not immediately resolved, other forces will follow suit (if they haven't already).

Demote this idiot back to traffic warden and put someone in the post who knows how to do his/her job!

Anonymous said...

One of the dead boy's friends blamed the killing on a turf war between rival gangs in the Shepherd's Bush-White City area.

So the tide of violence has finally reached the shores of the liberal establishment. Speaking of whom:

Great capital city. Shame about the awful BBC and The Biased Broadcasting Corporation.

Anonymous said...

the vast majority are there as a result of the textile workers who came in the 1960s

Actually it was the Conservative Govt which restricted females working night shift in textile mills c. 1955 which led to a need for men who could work night-shifts for women's wages.....hey presto....Pakistan and thus was a wholly uneconomic textile industry propped up for another decade

I wonder why noone recruited from Portugal or Brazil ?

Anonymous said...

Voyager - In those days, preference was given to members of the British Commonwealth.

Of course, that wouldn't be allowed by the EUSSR today.

Anonymous said...

"It is a really nice road, and we have a really expensive restaurant nearby called Chez Christophe where loads of celebrities go, right next to where it happened".

The above comments by Ms Rose typify the vapid shallowness of many metropolitan sophisticates.