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What London could learn from Scotland after huge drop in schoolkids carrying knives

No Knives Better Lives have been credited with reducing knife crime in Scotland (Picture: iStockphoto)

Scot..

By admin , in England , at June 19, 2019

Cloak and dagger - knife crime

No Knives Better Lives have been credited with reducing knife crime in Scotland (Picture: iStockphoto)

Scottish knife crime initiatives are working because theyre putting the money and the hard work into engaging young people, an expert has said.

Dr Anthony Goodman, a Middlesex University professor, praised No Knives Better Lives (NKBL) for reaching out to children by going into their schools.

The scheme, which has been running since 2009, has been credited with reducing the amount of young people carrying offensive weapons in Scotland by 85 per cent over the last decade.

Dr Goodman, who works with young offenders, emphasised how important it is to teach children about the consequences of carrying a knife – and defeat concepts of loyalty that might lock them into a path of violence.

He told Metro.co.uk: Its completely right that schools need to recognise this is something theyve got to be involved in.

NO KNIVES BETTER LIVES CAMPAIGN MARKS 10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY By Lucy Christie, Press Association Scotland A national programme to deter youths from carrying knives has reached an estimated 100,000 young people since it was established a decade ago, new figures show. No Knives Better Lives (NKBL) has been credited with contributing to an 85% reduction in the number of young people convicted of handling an offensive weapon since 2008-09. The YouthLink Scotland initiative - a response to the high incidence of knife crime in the country at the time - has focused on prevention and early intervention, with school visits and social media campaigns. The NKBL 10-year report published on Wednesday revealed that Balisong, a knife-carrying prevention play delivered in schools, has been seen by more than 20,000 young people. Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said the programme had delivered "substantial, sometimes life-changing" prevention activity over the decade. He said: "We have seen a significant, 85% reduction in the number of young people under 18 convicted of handling an offensive weapon, from 456 in 2008-09 to 68 in 2017-18 - alongside the wider fall in violent crime. "While there is much more to do to ensure every young person, no matter where they are from, lives free from the harm caused by knife crime, I am very grateful to YouthLink Scotland, their partners and the many young people involved in helping make Scotland a safer, better country to grow up in." YouthLink Scotland said there was more to do to keep young people safe from knife harm. Chief executive Tim Frew said: "We have seen a significant reduction in the recorded incidence of violent crime and possession of offensive weapons in Scotland, particularly amongst young people. "While this is good news, it is important not to see our work as complete regarding the issues of knife carrying, conflict and violence. "The cyclical nature of the problem, coupled with the small increase in knife crime prevalence in 2018 means that it is important we do not rest on our laurels." He added: "A worrying resurgence of knife crime in other parts of the UK, particularly London, indicates that we need to keep working hard to keep our young people safe from the harmful practice of knife carrying. "Prevention work must continue. Crucial partnerships between the youth work sector, schools, Police Scotland and other agencies that contribute to local NKBL initiatives need to be sustained and supported to deliver a safer Scotland for our young people."

The initiative has been running for 10 years (Picture: No Knives Better Lives)

Its essential we engage with young people and help them understand exactly how theyre putting themselves at risk. Young people need understand the complete impact its going to have on their lives.

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Only then will some of those group loyalties start coming down. NKBL has highlighted stories of people suddenly finding themselves serving sentences, which I think is just the right thing.

Dr Goodman said the increase in knife crime has also caused some teens to become hyper-vigilant – which could actually result in them being more likely to carry a weapon.

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He said: There are now young people who are traumatised by what theyve seen, in real life or online and that is impacting their health.

Its one thing to be told that you shouldnt carry a knife, but if you are sufficiently scared, and you feel that no one is listening, you might feel you need one for protection.

I think for a lot of young people can become very fatalistic and not see a future beyond their 20s, which is very worrying.

That is where we need to help them see beyond their immediate barriers. We need to develop a relationship of trust.

Street robber with a knife - killer person with sharp knife about to commit a homicide, murder scenery

Dr Anthony Goodman has emphasised the importance in engaging with young offenders (Picture: iStockphoto)

NKBLs 10-year report published on Wednesday revealed that Balisong, a knife-carrying prevention play delivered in schools, has been seen by more than 20,000 young people.

The YouthLink Scotland initiative, which was formed in response to the high incidence of knife crime in the country at the time, focuses on prevention and early intervention through social media, school visits and training youth workers.

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It is fully funded by the Scottish Government and received approximately £285,000 a year.

INS News Agency Ltd. 18/06/2019 *************** Picture by INS News Desk *************** Reforming alcoholic finance expert Stephen Appleton (pictured) whose death hit the headlines when it was revealed his GP told him to start drinking again because giving up was too dangerous, was badly let down by the NHS a coroner and his partner said today/yesterday (Wed). An inquest concluded that despite repeated attempts to get help on the road to recovery for his drinkin</br><a href=https://metro.co.uk/2019/06/19/london-learn-scotland-huge-drop-schoolkids-carrying-knives-10011891/><strong>Read More – Source</strong></a></p>
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