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Knife Crime: Analysing the Home Office’s response

August 16, 2019 — by

The government recently lifted stop and search restrictions, and launched the controversial initiative to try and combat knife crime by publishing real life examples of young people who chose positive activities over carrying a weapon…how did Twitter react?

Stop and Search
Interestingly, 23% of the tweets regarding the removal of stop and search restrictions generated happiness, 19% anger and 53% sadness.
Those who responded to the changes with happiness were significantly more likely to be affiliated to the Conservative Party and work in teaching and education, or the manufacturing and engineering sector. Whereas there was a higher chance that those who expressed sadness worked in teaching and education, law or business and management.

There were 837 tweets about Priti Patel. The most frequently used words were ‘disproportionate’ and ‘black men’. The expressed emotions surrounding Priti Patel, in the context of knife crime:

Chicken Boxes
Since the launch of the ‘chicken boxes’, the past 48 hours have seen over 26,000 tweets about knife crime which displayed overwhelming anger. Only 2% of tweets responded positively to the Home Office.

There were numerous references to the decline of youth services and calls for more funding, particularly in youth centres.

The top emotional terms were: hate, tragic and cried.

The most used emoji was:

Individuals who tweeted about chicken boxes, in the context of knife crime, were likely to be affiliated to the Labour Party and work in the following sectors: Teaching and Education, Creative Arts and Design, Marketing and PR, Healthcare or Law.

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