Since the beginning of 2018, 1300 stabbings have taken place in London and gang violence is becoming more severe. Rather than allocating the police and local councils a budget that allows them to combat rising crime, Home Office Minister Victoria Atkins believes that families of gang members should have their council houses taken away to deter criminals.

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Atkins said: “In the most serious cases, with these people who are exploiting young people, making the lives of local residents a misery, putting fear into people’s hearts when they’re picking children up from the school gates, I think absolutely they should understand the consequences of their criminal behaviour.”

The scheme is already being trailed in North London, where 14 known gangs have been terrorising the streets. Parents in the area have been urged to keep count of their kitchen knives to ensure their children haven’t taken them to use as weapons.

The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act was amended in 2014 to give authority to councils in England and Wales in the event of a violent crime.

Atkins said the government wish to prevent young people from joining these gangs and becoming trapped in criminality in the first place.

While this scheme could deter many young people from offending or reoffending, the concept of removing families of criminals (who are likely to be vulnerable themselves) seems ineffective. The solution to knife crime and gang culture isn’t the threat of homelessness, but rather an increased police budget and more stop-and-search powers in high crime areas.