Police, MPs and council give support to Luton News and Dunstable Gazette's Bin Your Blade campaign
'Differences can be resolved without resorting to violence, bullying or intimidation' says PCC
Bedfordshire's Police and Crime Commissioner is one of a number of leading figures to give his support to the Luton News and Dunstable Gazette's anti-knife crime campaign, since it was launched yesterday.
Festus Akinbusoye says he is supporting our Bin Your Blade initiative because of his own experience with serious violence.
He said: "Carrying a knife is not a show of strength, power or control. It is actually a sign that the person has lost control, the consequences of which can be fatal for both the person with the weapon and others too.
"Differences can be resolved without resorting to violence, bullying or intimidation. Bin Your Blade for a safer Bedfordshire."
Beds Police has also announced its support, posting on Facebook: "Thank you for shining a light on the terrible impact of knife crime with your new campaign this week. We must take a collective approach to tackling this issue: only by working with other agencies and our communities will we be able to truly stop this problem."
It added: "If you want to bin the blade, we have knife bins available across the county - visit our website to see where they are and go knife free today."
Meanwhile Luton Council tweeted: "We fully support @lutonnews Bin Your Blade campaign, which shows the devastating impact of knife crime. We stand shoulder to shoulder with @bedspolice and our community in tackling this evil."
And Luton MPs Sarah Owen and Rachel Hopkins both tweeted that they were "supporting @LutonNews' important Bin Your Blade campaign. Too many young people are losing their lives to knife crime. One preventable death is one too many".
We launched our Bin Your Blade campaign on Wednesday's front page of the Luton News and Dunstable Gazette and online here. It followed the fatal stabbing of 16-year-old Humza Hussain in Luton last week which shocked the community.
By publicising the awful consequences of carrying a knife we want to make a difference. We hope to encourage those who may be vulnerable to think twice, show them it’s not cool or a legitimate form of self defence to have a weapon, to resist exploitation and to avoid making dangerous choices.
In the days since the tragedy we have already seen members of the community come forward keen to support our young people through initiatives and ideas that aim to steer them away from the clutches of these gangs.
So, if you’ve been affected by knife crime please share your story with this newspaper, of if you’re trying to make a difference in the community get in touch and we’ll help you shout about it from the rooftops. Email [email protected] or call 07803 506099.
> See the June 16 edition of the Luton News and Dunstable Gazette for more on the week's tragic events and also a poster which will allow you to show support for our campaign by displaying it in windows, noticeboards and community buildings.