Suffolk Police urges parents to have 'difficult' conversations with children as part of national week of action against knife crime
Today marks the first day of a national week of action against knife crime - in which Suffolk Police is taking part.
Officers across the county will carry out intelligence-led deployments as part of ongoing work to tackle knife-based crimes and gang activity.
The campaign will also see liaison and community engagement officers visit schools to talk to young people about knife crime, County Lines drug dealing and gangs.
Parents are also being encouraged to have conversations with their children about the dangers of carrying knives and the importance of telling police if you suspect someone is carrying a knife.
Superintendent Kerry Cutler said: "With us all spending more time indoors with family due to the pandemic, it’s an ideal opportunity to talk about issues that normally wouldn’t get raised.
"Having that honest conversation about knife crime and listening and giving time to a young person can encourage them to think about their decisions and behaviour. Talking and listening is critical to finding a solution to the issue we have seen nationally around knife crime.
"Whilst the majority of young people do not carry knives, it is possible that children are in contact with friends who do so without parents or carers knowing. Often children will have talked about knives with friends or heard stories about those that carry them."
Supt Cutler also urged parents to make use of the information available on Suffolk Police's website.
Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore said: "Operation Sceptre gives the Constabulary an opportunity to raise awareness of the dangers of knife crime and also give people an opportunity to deposit blades safely – I fully support this work.
"Talking about the consequences of carrying a knife – both at home and at school – is so important.As a parent I know how difficult these conversations can be, but I would urge parents and carers to take advantage of this Operation Sceptre campaign to broach the subject at home.
"Knife crime is a growing problem and it’s got to stop. Carrying a knife doesn’t make you safe and sadly, as we all know, it can lead to dreadful consequences.”
Knife amnesty bins have been installed across the county to give people the chance to dispose of knives and blades safely.