The Lib Dem candidate for Walthamstow says she is ‘haunted’ by the killing of a 14-year-old boy as her party pledged to increase youth services funding.

Meera Chadha said the death of Jaden Moodie, fatally stabbed in Leyton last year, still haunts her and claimed the current approach to tackling violent crime was failing.

The Liberal Democrats have pledged to double spending on youth services in Waltham Forest to £17.5 million to spearhead a public health approach to violent crime.

This would form part of a total ring-fenced fund of £500 million for local authorities across England to spend on youth services.

East London and West Essex Guardian Series:

Jaden Moodie was fatally stabbed in Leyton last year

Date revealed by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Knife Crime show the average council has cut “real-terms spending” on youth services by 40 per cent over the past three years.

There was a 68 per cent increase in knife offences recorded by police in England and Wales over the same period.

Meera Chadha, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Walthamstow, said: “Too many people in Waltham Forest feel unsafe walking down their own streets. The premature death of Jaden Moodie earlier this year still haunts many of us, and every injury and death from knives in our city is a reminder that the current approach is failing.

“But for years, Conservative and Labour governments have been competing to seem tough on crime, without doing enough to actually prevent it.

“Liberal Democrats will build a brighter future for young people by doubling spending on youth services to £17.5 million a year in Waltham Forest.

“With a Liberal Democrat government, young people will have the support and opportunities they deserve, our local communities will be stronger and people here will feel safer.”