I congratulate Jim Fitzpatrick on securing the urgent question. I cannot begin to comprehend the sense of loss experienced by those families who have lost loved ones to violence in recent days, and we too send our deepest condolences to all who are suffering. I agree with him that the totally wrong response is to tweet or retweet racist jibes about the Mayor of London.
As the Minister knows, my party fully supports a public health approach to stopping violence, which has delivered significant progress in Scotland and elsewhere, and that the SNP supports and has delivered on protecting police numbers. We support the Government’s commitment to a public health approach, therefore, but when will we see an end to the significant cuts, particularly to local authority budgets, that have seen the safe spaces and key services crucial to such an approach decimated? While we also welcome the Home Secretary’s recent personal commitment to repairing the dramatic loss in police numbers, does the Minister share our support?
Finally, the Home Affairs Select Committee has heard disturbing evidence from young people, particularly young black and minority ethnic people, about their very poor relationship with and lack of trust in the police in some parts of London. What will the Minister do to ensure that trust is rebuilt between young people and the police in all our communities?