GCS Campaign of the Month winner April 2021

Congratulations to the National Crime Agency (NCA), winner of April’s GCS Campaign of the Month competition for their “Know the gun, know the law, know the consequences” campaign.

The campaign aimed to increase awareness and understanding of the UK’s firearms law within the general public and young adults who may have an interest in guns but may not know the law, or may be purposefully looking to buy firearms. NCA also wanted to raise awareness of where to report information on illegal firearms and increase the number of reports.

The team devised a national approach while also targeting specific locations. They partnered with key organisations in the industry, such as the British Shooting Association, embassies abroad, and Crimestoppers, to amplify the campaign messages online, increase reports on illegal guns, and raise awareness of firearms entering the country.

As a result of this campaign, NCA has seen an increase in the number of reports relating to illegal firearms. Calls to the Crimestoppers helpline increased by 18% in 8 weeks. The campaign reached 3 million people online through social media channels.

The judges highlighted that “it was an impactful campaign, which dealt with an emotive and difficult topic, achieving good clear results over a short-period of time”.

They added: “The campaign showed the power of working with the right partners, such as Crimestoppers, and the right agency for the target audience. The regional results show clear behaviour change as a result of the campaign activity.”

Matt Perfect, Senior Manager at NCA’s Firearms Threat Leadership Command, said:

“To be awarded the GCS Campaign of the Month winner is a very proud moment for the agency, and reflects on a huge team effort in our pursuit against firearms criminality. The campaign demonstrated that with a collaborative and partnership approach across many government and private sectors, we can reap huge rewards. The increase in public reporting provides real opportunity to remove some of the most dangerous criminals from our streets, protect our communities and save lives.”

Tracy Garcia, Strategic Communications Manager at the NCA added:

“Our firearms prevention campaign was a first for the agency and we consciously took on a partnership approach to ensure we effectively reached our audiences and increased reports into the Crimestoppers helpline. It truly was a team effort which has shown how well communications can work with policy colleagues and external partners.”

Tom Esslemont, Head of Communications at the NCA, said:

“We are delighted that this really important behaviour change campaign has been recognised. Firearms prevention is a key part of the NCA’s work in protecting the public from serious and organised crime. This really was a collective effort between operational and comms colleagues. We hope that, as well as continuing to ensure people report illegal weapons entering the UK, this work raises awareness more generally about such an important national security threat.”

Well done to the campaign team:

  • Tracy Garcia, Strategic Communications Manager
  • Mehboob Umarji, Head of Strategic Communications
  • Matt Perfect, Firearms Threat Leadership Command Senior Manager
  • Richard Stant, Firearms Threat Leadership Command Manager
  • Neil Birch, Firearms Threat Leadership Command Officer
  • Christopher Clarke, Firearms Threat Leadership Command Officer
  • Jack Taylor, Firearms Threat Leadership Command Officer
  • Bethany Daniel, Digital Communications Manager
  • Tim Kamiza, Senior Digital Communications Officer
  • Connor Heatley, Digital Communications Assistant
  • George Probert, Communications Assistant
  • Vanessa Smith, Internal Communications Manager
  • Natasha Bolton, Communications Account Manager
  • John Fahey, Senior External Communications Officer
  • Zak Stevens, Communications Officer
    Image credit:
  • National Crime Agency (1)