From Leader of Thurrock Independents, Cllr Luke Spillman
DESPITE the reassurances the police provided to Thurrock residents, it is clear for anyone to see that we are facing a law and order crisis in Thurrock. It should come of no surprise to anyone that we find ourselves in this position.
Policing budgets have been cut to the bone. We live in a low wage economy which provides very limited choices to many of our young people. The unforgivable levels of youth unemployment in London have provided a conveyor belt of excluded young males for opportunist organised criminals to recruit. Now London’s organised criminals are moving into places such as Thurrock seeking new territory to operate within. Whilst our prison system is operating in state of emergency.
I do not hold the police responsible for this situation, whilst political pressure and maintaining public order makes it extremely difficult for them to provide candid statements on the scale of the problem we face. I blame the Home Secretary, and now Prime Minister, Theresa May, for her irresponsible cuts to the Police, probation and prison services. I blame this and the previous Conservative government for slashing youth services across the board. I hold every government over the last 40 years responsible for (i) failing to act to tackle mass youth unemployment (ii) creating a low wage and limited opportunity economy and (iii) tolerating welfare dependency.
However, blame does not provide solutions. We need action and we must all demand a government that provides this action. This is why we should be disappointed to hear nothing but silence from, our Conservative run, Thurrock Council.