Friday, 4 September 2009

Branwen Jeffreys Scared Me Today

At the end of a piece on the news today (approx. 12 minutes in) about the botched management of a cannibal schizophenic triple murderer the reporter, Branwen Jeffries, sought to calm a panicking nation, rather like Nick Ross's catchphrase at the conclusion of Crimewatch "Don't have nightmares." Ms Jeffries calmly stated that the risk of being murdered in the UK was 1 in 1,000 and the chance of being murdered by a schizophrenic was 1 in 20,000. Er, I'm going to live in Afghanistan if it's really that dangerous. Actually the chance of being murdered in England and Wales* is about 12 per million ( one of the lowest rates in the world) and the risk of being murdered by someone with a mental illness was 0.07 per million. Giving crap statistics, it's what we do. A pity really as there's an excellent programme on Radio 4 called More Or Less that deals with stats.

* the risk of being muddrrrrd in Scotland is about 50% higher and, ironically, the murder rate in Northern Ireland rose after the peace agreement, so it did.


James Higham said...

... so it did.


anonymous said...

If you want to know what the chances of being murdered are in your particular region, use the NHS 'mortality rates' tool on the nhs website. In my borough of NW London murder is the 4th cause of death of women between the ages of 24 - 44, beating suicide which is 7th. In other regions of the UK, murder in the same age and sex category is far far lower, ie 17th.

Brian said...

@anon: many thanks for your excellent comment: thanks for highlighting the scandal of violence against women in The Great Wen. When I worked as a Personal Advisor in a JobCentre I kept a supply of business cards from a local refuge to hand to women wearing sunglasses on a rainy day or who had "fallen against door handles or down the stairs" underneath their JSA. Call me PC gone mad but there is no such thing as an abusive relationship, it's just abuse.