A message from the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson
Members of the community have recently raised concerns with me about a spike in gun crime.
Having guns and ammunition on the streets is one of the biggest worries of any law-abiding citizen: these weapons destroy lives, families and neighbourhoods.
The recent incidents have taken place in Birmingham, providing an unwelcome reminder of the city we knew more than a decade ago. However, we cannot and will not go back.
In response to the crimes and the calls from members of the public, I have recently launched a Community Weapons Surrender using the existing knife surrender bins.
Now, instead of just knives, people can safely deposit guns and ammunition too.
There are nine located in Birmingham and others dotted around the Black Country. I am calling on people to surrender the weapons immediately – it will prove to be the best decision you’ve ever made.
West Midlands Police is supporting the initiative and ACC Carl Foulkes attended the official launch with me at Perry Barr Sports Hub last week.
ACC Foulkes reassured members of the public about the safety of the bins, saying: “The surrender bins have been in place across the region for a number of years: they have never been damaged or compromised in any way. They are an extremely useful tool as we continue to tackle violent crime in the West Midlands and we fully support this initiative.”
I would also like to take this opportunity to encourage people who are worried about the path a loved one is taking to support this scheme.
Perhaps you have a friend you know has a gun?
It may even be your son, brother or boyfriend?
Whoever it is and whatever the link, I am asking you to dispose of these dangerous weapons in the surrender bins. Get rid of them once and for all for the sake of your family and to make the West Midlands a safer place.
The only way this initiative will work is if the community backs it and the early signs have been very positive. I’d like to thank the organisations that host the bins – from churches to sports halls, mosques to supermarkets – and for those who have already spread the word.
When all is said and done, the message is simple: do not carry a gun, it puts yourself and those around you in grave danger. Do the right thing and bin it. Here are the bin locations in Birmingham:
• New Testament Church Of God, New Spring Street Hockley
• New Testament Church Of God, 240- 244 Lozells Road Birmingham
• New Testament Church of God, Goosemore Lane, Erdington
• Tesco, Ruston Street, Five Ways, Edgbaston
• Aldi, 273 Stratford Road, Sparkbrook
• Tesco, 278-299 Aston Lane, Birmingham
• The Sports Hub Perry Barr, Holford Drive, Perry Barr
• Cannon Street Memorial Baptist Church, 330 Soho Road, Handsworth
• Green Lane Masjid, 20 Green Lane, Small Heath