Van to raise awareness of knife crime dangers launches

13/10/2020

A new initiative has been launched today (13 October) to help tackle knife crime and raise awareness of the dangers of knife possession.

Officers, with the aid of a specially-designed van, will be visiting local communities, including schools, high streets and supermarkets, across Sussex to engage, inform and educate about the serious risks of knife possession.

Members of the public will hear real-life stories of people whose lives have been impacted by knife crime and receive information and advice on where they can get help.

This forms part of a wider campaign to combat knife crime after Sussex Police secured additional funding from The Home Office's Serious Violence Fund for 2020/21. Other tactics include targeted days of action, increased patrols, knife sweeps, test purchasing activities and a multi-agency awareness campaign.

Chief Constable Jo Shiner said: "Carrying a knife can change your life forever.

"Not only does it put you and those around you at an increased risk of harm, but getting caught with one can result in serious personal and legal consequences.

"We want to help young people make the right choices by educating on the risks of knife possession and helping them get the support they need to live knife free."

Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “It is vitally important that real-life stories are shared with young people so they can understand the life-changing consequences this could have on them.

“I’m pleased to see Sussex Police being so proactive in their response to serious violence, putting early intervention methods in place to educate and protect our young people from getting caught up in criminality.

“The message is clear: lose the knife, not a life.”

Knife amnesty bins are available in police stations across Sussex- safely dispose of knives with no consequences and no questions asked.

Sussex is a safe place to live, and we take any reports of knife crime seriously in Sussex so it continues to be.

If you're concerned or have information about knife crime, you can report online or via 101.

In an emergency always dial 999.