Tutu Backs Mersey Scheme to Fight Gun Crime Scourge; Project Urged to Use Reconciliation Ideas

Article excerpt

Byline: BY ALAN WESTON Daily Post Staff

ARCHBISHOP Desmond Tutu is backing a new project to tackle gun crime on Merseyside.

The foundation which bears his name has launched the initiative in partnership with Merseyside Police and the Community Foundation for Merseyside charity.

It will use the principles established by the archbishop at South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission at the end of the apartheid era. This achieved the transformation of South Africa from a violent and oppressive regime to democracy without descending into vengeful chaos.

The scheme, to be launched today, is part of a nationwide project to implore policymakers to learn the lessons of South Africa, and coincides with the number of UK firearms offences topping 10,000 for the last year. It will explore origins of gang culture in the UK, and devise new approaches to tackle anti-social behaviour.

A new fund will be established to offer grants to pay for activities for young people vulnerable to falling into criminal activity.

Speaking in a pre-recorded address to a reception today to announce the partnership, Archbishop Desmond Tutu will voice his support for the work of the Foundation.

He will urge policymakers to address underlying causes leading to young people, who have fallen foul of the youth justice system, becoming demonised by society. …