LONDON (Dispatches) - The risk of a repeat of riots that scarred London and other major towns and cities exactly ten years ago is “higher than ever”, the Labour said.
Keir Starmer’s party accused Boris Johnson’s government of failing to tackle the conditions which led to the eruption of violence across Britain in 2011 – warning that the country remained a “tinderbox”, The Independent reported.
A report released by Labour to coincide with the tenth anniversary found that the number of “forgotten families” where many of the young people involved came from was likely to have doubled in the past decade.
The unrest which started in the capital on August 6, 2011 before spreading to 66 other areas followed the fatal shooting of Mark Duggan by police in Tottenham two days before.
But Labour said the government had implemented only 11 of the 63 recommendations made by an independent panel in 2012.
In its own report released on Thursday, the party said “the psychological damage to the communities the riots affected is untold”.
Launching Labour’s report on progress since the riots on Thursday, Shadow Communities Secretary Steve Reed said, “The deep social inequalities have grown wider after a decade of cuts to vital services that support struggling families and a rise in poverty.”
The Labour frontbencher said the UK was currently in a “tinderbox” situation.
“You can’t say – and shouldn’t say – there will be more riots. You can say the risk of riots we’re carrying today is higher than it was ten years ago,” Reed told Sky News on Thursday.
The MP added, “There were half a million families who needed support to bring up their children safely but weren’t getting it. By the government’s own figures, there are now 1.6 million children in those circumstances.”
The Riots, Communities and Victims Panel, which reported on the causes of the riots in 2012, found at the time that there were 500,000 so-called “forgotten families” in need of support but who did not reach the threshold for help due to funding cuts to local authority budgets.