Shadow home secretary Chris Grayling – slapped down by David Cameron this week for his homophobic remarks on gay couples staying in B&Bs (for which he only regrets “causing confusion”) – today stands accused of once again misleading the public over violent crime statistics.
During yesterday’s Daily Politics Home Secretary’s Debate Grayling again insisted violent crime was up, ignoring the findings of the British Crime Survey, as yet another report, out today, shows violent crime is down.
The “Violence in England and Wales 2009: an Accident and Emergency Perspective” report reveals all three measures of violence – the British Crime Survey, police recorded crime and accident and emergency figures – show a clear downward trend.
Last month Grayling claimed violent crime had risen 44 per cent – yet he has repeatedly failed to provide evidence of this, nor release full details of a study he commissioned.
As well as exposing Grayling’s deceit, the A&E figures condradict Liberal Democrat Home Affairs spokesman Chris Huhne’s statement in yesterday’s debate that “A&E data paints a different figure” to the BCS.
The graph below shows that, with the exception of one year’s A&E data and one year’s BCS data, all three measures show violent crime has decreased year-on-year during the last parliament:
Grayling has repeatedly failed to accept the findings of the British Crime Survey, which shows violent crime down 41 per cent since 1997, and all crime down by more than a third. In February, the Conservative Party was strongly criticised by the chair of the UK Statistics Authority for distributing leaflets claiming there had been a “98 per cent increase in serious violent crime”.Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.