The West Midlands is a metropolitan county in central England. It has a population of around 2.8 million people, making it the second largest populous county in England after Greater London. The West Midlands is currently made up of seven districts including: Wolverhampton, Dudley, Walsall, Sandwell, Birmingham, Solihull and Coventry. The largest of these districts is Birmingham, a city with a population of around 1.1 million people.
It is likely that White British people are now a minority population within Birmingham. The last official figures that we can reference are from 2011, when 53.14% of the population were classified as White British. If this is the case, then Birmingham will join London, Leicester, Luton and Slough as cities where the native population make up less than 50%.
Crime in England and Wales
Official statistics from the UK Government show that crime overall is falling in England and Wales. These figures, however, do not differentiate between different categories of crime. Crimes such as criminal damage, fraud and computer misuse are falling, which is resulting in the overall crime figures looking better than they actually are. If we break down the crimes by type then we see a different picture.
According to statistics which were released last month, there were 40,147 offences involving a knife or blade in England and Wales between March 2017 and March 2018. This is a figure which is up 16% from the previous year. The number of homicides for the same period was 701 (up 12% from 627 the previous year) and the number of offences involving firearms increased to 6,492 (up 2% from 6,375 the previous year).
In addition to the above figures, vehicle theft is up 17% from the previous year, overall theft is up 8% from the previous year, burglary is up 6% from the previous year and robbery is up 30% from the previous year. There has also been a 24% increase in recorded sexual offences by police, however it is suggested that this increase reflects improvements made in how crime is recorded.
London accounts for 17% of all recorded crimes in England and Wales. Although this figure seems huge, we must bear in mind that the population of London makes up around 14-15% of England and Wales. If we look at those figures per capita, we can see a discrepancy of around 2-3%. Considering that there were 5,515,882 recorded offences in England and Wales for the period 2017-2018, this is a discrepancy of between 110,000 and 165,000 crimes. We should also further examine the type of crime which is happening in London and, as we know, violent crimes, such as knife and gun offences, tend to be disproportionately concentrated in the city.
Diversity and Crime in Birmingham
Being a multicultural city, Birmingham is not already without it’s problems. There are residents living in Birmingham from over 200 countries. 60% of under-18s in Birmingham are from non-White British backgrounds, which paints a pretty bleak picture of what the future demographics of Birmingham will look like. 47,000 people living in Birmingham can’t speak English. Only 65% of working-age residents in Birmingham have jobs (compared to 74% which is the national average). Birmingham is one of the least environmentally-friendly areas in the UK. It was also voted as the city with the second worst upkeep in the UK, after London.
On top of this, Birmingham has being a hot spot for violent crime in recent years resulting in the city becoming known as the most unsafe city outside of London.
New figures were revealed today which highlight the number of knife crimes taking place in the county of West Midlands. Of the 880 knife crimes which took place between May 2017 and May 2018, over half of them (470) took place in Birmingham. If we look at the figures per capita, this means that 39% of people in the West Midlands were responsible for 53% of attacks. Figures revealed last year show that knife crime in Birmingham is at a 14-year high. Homicides are also at their highest figure since 2012. The city also has double the number of gun crime offences when compared to the national average.
In addition to this, Birmingham has become known as a breeding ground for terrorists. The number of Muslims who have embraced extremist violence in Birmingham is thought to be higher than the total number combined in West Yorkshire, Manchester and Lancashire, despite the Muslim population of those three areas being around three times as high.
There is also an issue with gang violence. Former gang member turned community activist, Simeon Moore, suggests:
“There’s gun shot going off in the city practically every day and its massively under-reported. Nobody in the community will call the police and the cops themselves are often too scared to attend reports of gun fire.”
“The gangs today are chaotic. There’s no structure or loyalties and they are fearless. People are shot and stabbed to death today over the slightest incident and not necessarily over money or drugs.”
Chief Constable of West Midlands Police, David Thompson, revealed last year that his officers were so hard-pressed due to the rise in crime in the city that even allowing them holidays was becoming ever more challenging. He added:
“Rightly, a high proportion of our staff want to take holidays with their families but, at the same time, demand is going up and it is becoming more challenging.”
There is a clear correlation between the demographics of an area and the rise in crime, London and Birmingham being just two examples. We can only expect more of this as the White British share of Britain gets smaller and smaller. If nothing is done, White British people are expected to become a minority within Britain by the year 2066.