Police Scotland has relaunched an awareness-raising initiative aimed at preventing young people from falling into a life of crime.
Working in partnership with the Scottish Government, police have devised an educational pack for young people that shows the devastating effects of Serious Organised Crime.
The Slide is a specially-created film that details a young man's downward spiral into criminality from his teenage years into early adult life.
David, the star of the film, is 13-years-old when he tries drugs for the first time. This is the beginning of a series of negative life choices, which results in him committing various offences and becoming a member of a Serious Organised Crime Group.
After completing a prison sentence David becomes trapped in the crime group and is threatened by other members when he tries to leave. He subsequently becomes the victim of a serious attack by a rival crime group.
The official relaunch took place at Edinburgh's Broughton High School on Wednesday 13th June, where the film was shown to S2 pupils. After watching each film scene, attendees participated in a range of discussions to promote positive lifestyle choices and discuss the consequences of becoming involved in crime.
Following the re-launch in Edinburgh, S2 pupils from schools across the country can take part in this awareness raising initiative.
Chief Inspector Alison Higgins from the Safer Communities Division said, "The vast majority of Scotland's youths will never commit a criminal offence, or have any negative engagement with the criminal justice system. However, it is essential that we work closely with our partners to deter young people from making bad decisions, which can seriously impact upon their future.
"The Slide might be a fictional film, but the scenario that develops is one we have seen many times before and we want to demonstrate to those attending the seminars that there is nothing glamorous about a life of crime.
"This educational pack has been made in close collaboration with a range of partners and demonstrates a joint commitment to keeping our children safe from harm and ensuring they have all the information they require to make positive lifestyle choices."
Cabinet Secretary for Justice, Michael Matheson said, “I am pleased to see the relaunch of “the Slide” which highlights the grim reality of becoming involved in serious organised crime. It is important that young people in particular can see the reality and potential consequences of making the wrong the choices and the impact these can have on not only themselves but their wider circle of family and friends.
“Those engaged in organised crime are only interested in their bottom line and it is crucial that we all work together to ensure they are no longer able to exploit young people for their own benefit.
“This relaunch follows the recent research report into Community Experiences of Serious Organised Crime which challenges the myths surrounding serious organised crime and stresses the importance of communicating the real consequences of being drawn into organised crime. The Slide will make a valuable contribution to that effort.”