In June 2011 the Government pledged that any adult convicted of using a knife to threaten someone would face a mandatory six month prison sentence. However, as residents in Enfield and across London know only too well, it is a sad fact that a high number of those using knives are under the age of 18.
Nick led a campaign in the constituency and in Parliament seeking to amend the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill to ensure that mandatory custodial sentences would also apply to those under 18 years of age. The Government opposed this idea.
Supported by the Enfield Independent, residents, anti-knife crime groups, David Burrowes MP and Conservative councillors, the campaign gained national attention. In November 2011 the agreed to back Nick's amendment so that 16 and 17 year olds would be included in the plans.
Because of the way the campaign for this groundbreaking change had come from Enfield, the new law has been dubbed "Enfield's Law". The borough can be proud that it has helped make a difference to the lives of young people and made our streets safer.
Not content with this, Nick has now strengthened the law even further. Now, anyone caught carrying a knife on two occasions will get a mandatory six month prison sentence.
Nick tabled an amendment to the Criminal Courts and Justice Bill and lobbied fellow MPs as well as Government ministers. After arguing his case for a tougher deterrent in Parliament and in the media, Nick convinced a staggering 404 MPs to support his plans to see the law approved.
BBC: MPs BACK MANDATORY JAIL TERM FOR SECOND OFFENCE
Nick said, "Knife crime has tragically taken the lives of far too many people in this country. Prosecuting people who use a knife to threaten, injure or kill a person is not enough - we need to prevent it even getting that far by sending to prison people caught carrying a knife".
He added, "I want to see knife crime come down drastically. That's why I am strongly of the view that as well as having a strong deterrent, we must also have effective early intervention measures and better education. Only by tackling it from all sides can we truly fight knife crime".
Nick has always argued that solving our knife crime problem cannot be done by laws alone and he is now focusing on working with local and national groups to help deter young people from a life dominated by gangs and in many cases knife crime. The all too familiar tragic outcome for so many young people demands that we do whatever we can to stop the culture of hopelessness, lack of responsibility and poor parenting that can lead young people into gangs and knife crime.
The government has set out a national strategy working to ensure that there are successful early intervention programmes, stronger judicial responses and integrated cross-government work which will help beat the scourge of knife crime.