Advertisement

We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

finger clickin backlash

UK's Home Office branded 'racist or unfathomably stupid' for anti-knife crime ads on chicken boxes

A UK minister said the messages will “bring home” the consequences of knife crime to young people.

A NEW CAMPAIGN by the UK’s Home Office that seeks to reduce knife crime with ads on chicken boxes has been criticised as “racist or unfathomably stupid”.

The initiative sees 321,000 chicken boxes distributed to 210 outlets in England and Wales that have a “#knifefree” message.

“The insides of the boxes are printed with real life stories of young people who have chosen to pursue positive activities, such as boxing or music, instead of carrying a knife,” the Home Office said announcing the plans.

The UK’s Policing Minister Kit Malthouse said the chicken boxes would: “bring home to thousands of young people the tragic consequences of carrying a knife”.

A number of well-known UK chicken shop chains are participating in the campaign but it has been criticised by several opposition politicians and people online. 

Labour’s shadow home secretary Diane Abbott MP said the initiative demonised communities and wasted money.

“Instead of investing in a public health approach to violent crime, the Home Office have opted for yet another crude, offensive and probably expensive campaign. They would do better to invest in our communities not demonise them,” Abbott tweeted.  

Party colleague David Lammy MP told The Guardian that the idea promoted racist tropes in linking black people to fried chicken.

“Boris Johnson has already called black people ‘piccaninnies with watermelon smiles’. Now his government is pushing the stereotype that black people love fried chicken. This ridiculous stunt is either explicitly racist or, at best, unfathomably stupid,” he said. 

Knife crime has been a persistent problem in the UK with over 5,500 people injured in knife crime incidents in London alone in the 12 months to last October, a record figure which includes over 90 killings.

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
63
This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
Leave a Comment
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.

    Leave a commentcancel