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Walsall students make powerful pledge against knife crime

Students from two Walsall schools recently spent some time with our operations department to thank them for their work on an emotive banner of pledges against knife crime. 

Local officers from the Delves neighbourhood policing team have been working with students from Blue Coat and Joseph Leckie academies to produce a banner, covered in fake blood splatter which provides a powerful visualisation of the devastating impact knife crime has within our communities.

It represents a pledge made by all concerned to help stamp out knife crime in Walsall.

As a thank you, a handful of students from Joseph Leckie were invited to meet Project Guardian lead, Superintendent Phil Dolby to present their work.

In addition, Phil arranged for some of our furry friends and firearms officers to meet the pupils. Last month, the students armed with their impressive banner, visited Park Lane. After sharing their thoughts on the dangers of carrying knives they spent some time with a couple of police dogs and their handlers and also got to meet some firearms officers.

The banner was first shown during a Walsall FC match in April with students, teachers, players and officers standing together on the pitch at half time.

Pledges include:

  • “I would tell them to think about their family"
  • “Knives destroy lives"
  • “We need to stop knife crime, put away the knife or it could destroy a life"
  • “One knife, one death, one soul, many lives"

Violent crime in Walsall , particularly knife crime, is a force priority. There are concerns amongst young people in the area and officers are doing all they can as part of their ongoing commitment to exposing the reality of knife crime and its consequences.

Superintendent Phil Dolby, lead for Project Guardian, said: “I am massively impressed by this - the students have worked really hard on their pledges and put some real thought into them.

“The discussions we have had have been really thought-provoking and we’re all clear that we need to drive out the culture of young people feeling comfortable carrying knives or feeling the need to carry knives for their protection. The students were very open and honest, it was genuinely great to meet them and hear their views. It’s so important that we understand the views of young people on these issues.

“The pupils had a fun-filled morning learning more about officers work and were really happy to share their banner with us.

“We’re doing all we can to tackle knife crime in the West Midlands and are actively working with our local communities, the voluntary sector, faith groups and other partners to see what more we can do together to deal with the root causes."

Imrana Niazi, Chair of One Palfrey Big Local (iMatter Walsall), said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Delves and Palfrey neighbourhood policing team on this community initiative to educate and build awareness around knife crime and other related crimes. 

“We have taken a practical and visible approach in order for it to have a hard-hitting impact with our youth. The pupils have written their own pledges to end knife crime and express what this awful crime means to them."

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