News archive 2007
Young black people and criminal justice07 Dec 2007, PR 197/07
A unique ‘roundtable' discussion between young people, practitioners, policy makers and leading thinkers took place on Friday (7 December) at King's College London.It explored practical solutions to tackling the criminalisation of young black people.
The roundtable, organised by King's College London School of Law and supported by the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the Stone Ashdown Trust, considered the most effective solutions to tackling the problem of the over representation of young black people in the criminal justice system and how they should be implemented.
Official statistics show that black people are seven times more likely than their white counterparts to be stopped and searched. Over representation of young black people at every stage of the criminal justice process has, according to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (formerly the Commission for Racial Equality), resulted in more young black men going to prison than to university.
The aims of the round table event are:
To develop practical solutions to the criminalisation of young black people in the criminal justice system;
To widen the participation of young people in developing activities that provide protection from involvement in crime and the criminal justice system and other harms;
To provide a forum for sharing knowledge, discussion, engagement and sharing examples of good practice;
To build a national network of engaged and active young people and professionals in the statutory, voluntary and community spheres.
Confirmed participants include Dianne Abbott MP, Lee Jasper (GLA), Professor Gus John, Leroy Logan (Metropolitan Police), Ken Barnes (C-A-N-I), Karen Chouhan (Equanomics), Kirk Dawes (Mediation & Transformation), Peter Herbert (Society of Black Lawyers), Linton Kwesi Johnson, Rev. Nims Obunge (Peace Alliance) and representatives from the X-It programme (Guardian Public Services Award Winner), the Children's Society, NACRO, Equality & Human Rights Commission, Home Office and Ministry of Justice.
Speaking today Professor Ben Bowling, Associate Head (Criminal Justice Research) in the King's College London School of Law said:
'Reducing the criminalisation of young black people is a key test of the Government's commitment to social justice, equality and a safe society for all. There is a need for a coordinated response that enables individuals, supported by community and voluntary organisations and resourced by local and central government, to deliver real change on the ground.'
Notes to editors
The roundtable event is being organised in collaboration with the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies (CCJS) and the Institute for Criminal Policy Research at King's College London(ICPR).
An analysis by the Commission for Race Equality in 2003 found that in the previous year there were more African Caribbean entrants to prison (over 11,500) than there were to UK universities (around 8,500).
King's College London
King's College London is one of the top 25 universities in the world (Times Higher 2007) and the fourth oldest in England. A research-led university based in the heart of London, King's has 19,300 students from more than 130 countries, and 5,000 employees. King's has an outstanding reputation for providing world-class teaching and cutting-edge research. The College is in the top group of UK universities for research earnings and has an annual income of approximately £400 million. An investment of £500 million has been made in the redevelopment of its estate.
King's has a particularly distinguished reputation in the humanities, law, social sciences, the health sciences, natural sciences and engineering, and has played a major role in many of the advances that have shaped modern life, such as the discovery of the structure of DNA. It is the largest centre for the education of healthcare professionals in Europe and is home to five Medical Research Council Centres – more than any other university.
Melanie Gardner, Public Relations Department, King's College London, Tel: 020 7848 3073 Email: email@example.com
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