We’ve been reviewing the latest ONS report findings to see what trends have been identified.
The Office of National Statistics have released their latest report on Crime in England and Wales for the year ending June 2022. The main comment is that the coronavirus pandemic had a huge impact on both the levels of crime and the way the ONS collected data for it’s reports. This is still having an impact now as we attempt to compare most recent data with data previously collected. The ONS notes that this is the first report that can be directly compared with those pre pandemic.
The good news
Overall there is good news: crime is generally lower now than before the pandemic. We’re all relieved to hear that compared with these pre pandemic times crime in general is falling. In fact an 8% decrease in overall crime has been recorded compared with data collected to end March 2020. This is a significant drop.
More good news is that incidents of fraud, which spiked during lockdown, have fallen back to ‘normal’ levels. Concerns that this type of offence would continue to be prolific are alleviated as it looks as though this was specific to that period of time.
Theft offences recorded in the crime survey are also down compared with the year before lockdown year. This could be down to improved security technology being widely implemented, a change in home working habits or other factors. Recently, Police pledged to attend every burglary in an attempt to reassure people about this type of crime.
The pinch of salt
Whilst crime is down compared to 2019/202, it has actually increased since last year.
Since the year ending June 2021, police recorded crime has increased by 12% in the year ending June 2022.ONS
There was a 17% increase in the number of incidents of theft after the restrictions of the third lockdown were lifted Levels of theft increased after restrictions related to the third national lockdown were lifted. Police recorded robbery also increased 10% compared with the year ending June 2021, although this was still lower than 2019/2020 figures.
Police recorded crime in England and Wales in the year ending June 2022 exceeded pre-coronavirus pandemic levels. The 6.5 million crimes recorded was 7% higher compared with the year ending March 2020 (6.1 million offences).ONS
It is likely that we will need to see a number of ONS future reports before it is clear whether the numbers will remain below pre pandemic levels, or if the post lockdown increases will continue.