The fourth and last East Area BCU Serious Violence Summit was held in Dagenham yesterday. The tri borough event sees Havering, Redbridge and Barking and Dagenham all unite to work together to help eradicate serious violence.
The summit was attended by many local councillors, charities, and police officers.
Guest speakers included Professor Simon Harding, Professor in Criminology at the University of West London and Sophie Linden the Deputy Mayor of Policing and Crime in London.
Councillor Jan Sargent was present at the last summit and told the Havering Daily: “I would like to thank the organisers for bringing together such an informative and eye-opening event.
“I felt very privileged to be amongst people who are not only trying their hardest to raise awareness of influencing issues but to also tackle head-on today’s very concerning surge in serious violence.
“The event agenda was a mixture of presentations, talks and thought-provoking workshops which I personally found extremely helpful and interesting. Information that I can now take forward and share with others.”
Also present at the summit was Sue Hedges who lost her son Ricky Hayden to knife crime in 2017. Sue told the Havering Daily: “I was privileged to have been invited along with my daughter April.
“There were interesting speakers and it is always nice to meet other people and charity workers all trying to fight the same cause.
“However, each year they talk a great deal about things they are going to do and yet each year we are seeing knife crime rise and murders on our street.
“Sophie Linden spoke, the Deputy Mayor of Policing and Crime for London. I met her after five attempts to have a meeting with Sadiq Khan over knife crime. I told her that my son had been murdered and that now he was just another statistic. She seemed very interested in what I said and asked me to email her which I did and two years later I am still awaiting her reply.”