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Tough on… what? New Labour’s war on crime statistics

Edwards, Phil (2015) Tough on… what? New Labour’s war on crime statistics. In: Social justice and criminal justice. Kings College London, Centre for Crime and Justice Studies. ISBN 9780954890339


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New Labour’s term in office has been remarkable for the emphasis the government has placed on ‘law and order’ issues - traditionally associated with Conservative rather than Labour governments. A more significant innovation, representing a break with the law-andorder Right as well as the Left, has been the adoption of a broad and coherent preventive agenda, aimed at the active management of both crime and non-criminal disorder. An unintended consequence of New Labour’s ‘disorder prevention’ programme has been to make it significantly more difficult to define, record or count criminal offences in coherent ways. Ironically, a government which prides itself on its achievements in the fight against crime has made it harder than ever before to measure the actual rate at which criminal offences are committed.

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