Andrew Boff AM: Mr Mayor, I absolutely welcome your words with regard to some of the initiatives that are taken with regard to trying to tackle knife crime. They tend to be about politicians wanting to be seen as though they are trying to do something.
There are parts of London where youth clubs cannot get funding unless they push under the noses of young people posters about how they should not carry knives. They bring to the centre of the debate, “What is the best way for me as a young person to oppose authority? What they are telling me to do is not carry knives”. The result has been that the only way to get that funding in some parts of London is to have a very rigorous knife crime agenda within your youth club or organisation.
I very much value what you have said. What we need is to concentrate more on funding generic youth work, not targeted youth work, because you are actually providing an incentive for people to do what you are asking them not to do when you target.