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The need to talk about youth violence has become more acute

After a well-received talk last year on youth violence, the Birmingham & Solihull branch is focussing this year’s event on social media and county lines

Youth violence and gangs are an increasingly large problem UK-wide. There are both national and local concerns about gang-related violence and youth violence involving knives, guns and corrosive substances which the latest research suggests is linked to drugs, social media and ‘county lines’.

Following on from a successful event last year, the BASW Birmingham & Solihull branch is again collaborating with the University College Birmingham to deliver a practitioner-focused event. 

Last year’s event featured Craig Pinkney (Criminologist, Urban Youth Specialist, Lecturer) and Richard Taylor (Damilola Taylor Trust) and focused on ‘Working with Youth Violence and Gangs’ giving an insight into the challenges facing social workers and ways to engage with young people involved or affected by youth violence.

The specialist focus for this year is: ‘Youth Violence, Social Media and County Lines’. The morning presentation will spotlight ‘county lines’ and rural violence.

The afternoon session will explore social media and its relationship with youth violence. The presentations will also explore: the impact of prisons, working with high risk offenders, indicators of gang membership, the role social media plays and the factors influencing ‘county lines’.

The event will provide frontline practitioners with the knowledge and tools they need to work more effectively with disaffected youths involved in youth violence or victims of violent crime.

Our keynote speakers this year will be Craig Pinkney and Solomon Griffiths:

Craig is one of the UK’s leading thinkers/doers in Responding to Urban Disaffection, Gangs & Serious Youth Violence. Craig is an experienced an outreach worker, transformational speaker, gang exit strategist, mediator, mentor, filmmaker and lecturer at University College of Birmingham.

Craig is well known for working with some of the city’s most challenging young people, potentially high-risk offenders, victims of gang violence and youth who are deemed as hard to reach.

Through mentoring, discussion, advocacy, sport, media, film and faith-based interventions Craig aims to give a platform to young people, which he believes will raise attainment and to promote positive social change.

Solomon Griffiths is the director and founder of 5 Steps Forward CIC. Solomon is a consultant, mediator and mentor with over 10 years’ experience, working with high-risk offenders and gang members.

Solomon also has experience of work within prisons and youth offending.  Solomon is well known for his work within the West Midlands for his services and is amongst some of the best in promoting anti-youth violence.

The event will include interactive workshops on the day to choose from which will aim to consider the keynote information and answer 5 questions the keynote speakers pose and then bring a key point/unanswered question back to a panel.  The workshops will be followed by a closing panel discussion and opportunities for networking.

This event is open to BASW members and non-members, please book here