#doyouknow campaign

Parents across Inverclyde are being encouraged to support a joint police and council campaign against large scale youth gatherings this weekend.

Head teachers have taken the unusual step of writing to parents and carers during the Easter school holiday after reports of large scale youth gatherings resulted in one young person being stabbed and police officers being attacked last weekend.

A council spokesperson said: “The council and Police Scotland met this week to look at what happened over the weekend.

“It is clear that the actions of last weekend were by a minority of young people and that the vast majority of our young people stick to the rules, especially the covid restrictions.

“Unfortunately the actions of small minority have resulted in some serious incidents. The #doyouknow campaign has been in existence for a few years and used when large scale gatherings have taken place. Now that campaign will be actively promoted this weekend and supported by the council and police to support the community to help make sure young people are keeping themselves and our area safe.”

Letter issued to parents and carers from Inverclyde Council’s head teachers:

Dear parent,

You may have noticed over last weekend some very concerning news reports of large scale youth gatherings, including assaults on young people and police officers.

In normal times this level of anti-social behaviour would not be acceptable but during the pandemic, when we are all being encouraged to protect each other, it is even more concerning that incidents like th are taking place in our streets.

I would like to ask for your support to help us respond to this.

In recent years the council and police have joined forces to develop the ‘do you know’ campaign.

It aims to encourage parents and carers to ask that simple question: do you know where your child is?

If it’s late in the evening and there are reports of large scale groups gathering in the area on social media, do you know if your child is there?

If there are concerns over the safety of young people at these gatherings, do you know if your child is safe?

If there are incidents associated with large scale gatherings which affect our communities, do you know if your child was involved?

Not knowing the answer to these and other similar questions should be a real concern.

These are frustrating times for all of us having to do things we’ve never done and live by rules we wouldn’t have thought possible even a few years ago.

Our young people, who have been through so much during the pandemic, have had a tough time and the vast majority of them have lived their lives safely and have been supporting their families and community by sticking to the rules.

Working together to support the community, the police and our young people, we can make sure we do know where they are and that they are staying safe.

Thank you for your time and please look out for the #doyouknow campaign on social media which will help to show practical resources to help parents and carers to keep young people safe whether they are outside or online.