The fantastic campaigners from Opening Boundaries and Justice for Ryan are holding an anti-knife crime community day on the 30th September at Stourbridge Town Football Club.
They will be raising awareness of the role sport can play in providing young people with the social opportunities that keep them off the street and make our communities safer.
The community day will be held in memory of Ryan Passey, an aspiring young footballer whose life was tragically cut short as a result of knife crime. We’ve seen a series of tragic deaths as a result of knife crime in the Black Country, and I think there is much to be done to prevent more people being injured or killed.
The day will include lots of activities and a charity football game at 2pm, featuring a number of ex-professional footballers.
In June I asked the Home Secretary Sajid Javid to provide more funding to tackle gangs and knife crime with early intervention schemes, mediation programmes and other initiatives. I want all of us - the government, the police and the local community groups such as Opening Boundaries – to work together to tackle this problem.
I also want to see a tougher approach for those caught carrying a knife and I think there should be automatic prison sentences for anyone caught with one. People need to be told that if they go out with a knife and they get caught, they will be locked up. No ifs and no buts.