Just Drop It: Luton Town FC wear armbands in support of Bedfordshire's new anti-knife crime campaign
Luton Town Football Club have become the latest supporters of a new anti-knife crime campaign in the county.
The Premier League side have organised activities to show their support for the Just Drop It campaign led by the Bedfordshire Violence and Exploitation Reduction Unit (VERU). First team players Andros Townsend, Jacob Brown and Alfie Doughty have sported Just Drop It armbands in a sign of unity with the campaign.
Last week the club’s academy players listened to a talk from Roseann Taylor, a mother whose son was stabbed to death. The campaign’s main video tells the story of Azaan ‘AJ’ Kaleem, who was stabbed to death in Luton in 2018. His mum Roseann now works for the VERU’s Youth Intervention Specialist team.
Luton Town chairman David Wilkinson said: “We are proud to support the VERU Just Drop It initiative to increase awareness of the widespread and unseen results of knife crime.
“It is not just the victims, but their family, friends, and local community along with everyone associated with the protagonists, who are affected by these terrible events.”
Luton Town are among scores of public services, education settings, charities and other organisations pledging their support to Just Drop It.
Roseann said: “I have been blown away by the positive reception the Just Drop It campaign has had so far, as well as the enthusiasm and support it has had from people like Luton Town.
“Having the backing of a Premier League football club gives the campaign a whole different dimension and I cannot thank the club enough for their wholehearted support for what we are trying to achieve.
The film, produced by TMG Creative, is to be premiered in a special screening at Youthscape in Luton tonight (Wednesday) at 7pm. Further screenings are set to take place across the county over the coming weeks.
There will be a Facebook Live webinar tomorrow evening (Thursday), where people will be able to watch the film and ask questions of Roseann as well as other professionals who work with young people.