As part of Staffordshire Police’s efforts to reduce knife-related crime, they are launching a new Knife Amnesty for 2017 and are hoping it will take more bladed items off the streets.
If you carry a knife or have a dangerous or illegal knife at home, they are asking you to “bin it.”
Staffordshire Police’s Knife Amnesty, which will take place 10th-16th July, will see knife bins located across the county enabling members of the public to get rid of any knives that are either illegal or surplus to requirements. All knives collected will be given to the British Ironwork Centre for them to use, as part of a sculpture they hope will appear on a Trafalgar Square plinth.
The presence of the knife bins will be complemented by sessions in schools to help educate schoolchildren on the dangers of carrying knives.
Local Youth Offender Teams in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent will be engaging with young people to discourage them from carrying and using knives. Plus Trading Standards will also be educating and inspecting businesses that sell knives to ensure they are doing everything possible to prevent a sale to an under-18.
This is Staffordshire’s second knife amnesty with the first taking place in June and July last year. In 2016 the public gave up close to 1,000 knives and it saw knife crime drop 18% during the dates of the amnesty. However, the use of knives in all crimes has continued to increase nationally between April 2016 and April 2017.
Chief Superintendent Wayne Jones, head of local policing and operations at Staffordshire Police, said, “We would like to repeat the successes of last year where we reduced the likelihood of people carrying or using knives throughout the amnesty period. Sadly there are still some people who believe carrying a knife or storing a knife as a weapon in their home is a good idea and something that they need to do to fit in or be seen as tough.
“The truth of the matter is that you are far more likely to be hurt if you have a knife with around 70% of all people admitted to hospital with knife injuries stabbed with their own knife. It makes no sense whatsoever to carry a knife – so don’t, take the opportunity during the amnesty to get rid and save yourself and your family from the senseless pain that knife carrying can bring.
“Play your part in reducing knife crime by reporting people who you know or suspect may be carrying a weapon illegally. Call your local police on 101, or dial 999 if a crime is in progress or a life is in danger. If you can’t talk to police, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers by calling 0800 555 111 or using their online reporting form and give information about crime anonymously.”
Click here for a full list of the knife bin locations.
can be found at www.staffordshire.police.uk/bintheblade.