Posted on 17th September 2018
This week we will be supporting Operation Sceptre by continuing our work with Project Zao to reduce knife crime in Derbyshire.
Following a successful week of action in February this year, all 44 police forces including the British Transport Police (BTP), across England and Wales will be taking part in the latest national phase of Operation Sceptre, as part of the ongoing fight against knife crime.
Here in Derbyshire, we have worked since 2015 with our partners in education and councils across the county on Project Zao, to warn of the dangers of carrying a knife and to target those that do so.
This week sees the launch of a joint project with Derby City Council where in 6 days over 2000 school children in the city will take part in a performance and workshop focussing on the complex, interrelated issues of knife crime, gang violence an self-identity.
The activity called ‘Switch up’ is led by Saltmine Theatre Company and uses a drama production following two mates ‘Dan and Jay’ as they face the dilemmas of being involved in gang culture and knife crime. The performance is then used to lead workshops to highlight the dangers of their choices.
Inspector Rich Keene, who is leading on Project Zao, said: “”Our officers have been visiting schools across the county warning of the dangers of carrying a knife, as part of Project Zao, for the past 2 years.
“We are particularly excited about launching ‘Switch up’ during Operation Sceptre week as we believe it portrays the real dilemmas facing young people and gives opportunity for them to discuss their choices in a controlled environment.
“Carrying a knife holds some potentially life-changing consequences and we are determined that young people know what these are and so choose not to do so.
“Derbyshire Constabulary is a lead force in relation to its response to knife crime and its causes. We are seen as a beacon for other forces in terms of education and engagement and are acknowledged as displaying the best practice in our working with partners, schools, young people and wider communities”.
If you are concerned or have any information about knife crime in your community please contact us using one of the following non-emergency contact methods.
Please quote Project Zao.
You can also anonymously contact the independent charity Crimestoppers, on 0800 555 111 or by visiting www.crimestoppers-uk.org