Saturday April 27, 2019INDEX
The importance of being honest about crime

If you read the more excitable newspapers you are probably convinced that crime is at an all time high, particularly violent crime..

Is it? Over the last two decades the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) has shown long-term reductions in estimates of violent crime. See Office for National Statistics web site.

Over the last four years levels of violent crime measured by the CSEW have remained fairly flat. The number of homicides recorded by the police showed a fourth consecutive annual rise in the year ending March 2018, following a long-term decline, according to ONS.

The number of violent incidents (as ONS puts it) has roughly halved since about 1995. See graph.

A different way of measuring crime is a sample of 126 emergency departments carried out by Cardiff University. This showed violent crime was down by 1.7% between 2017 and 2018.

It's quite important to get these statistics right because people base their behaviour on how safe they think the streets are. This means little old ladies are more likely to be afraid to go out and young likely lads (and these days ladesses) are more likely to go out packing a knife, just in case.
ONS violent crime statistics

Posted by Jonathan Brind.
Wednesday April 27, 2019INDEX