Po­lice body cam­eras are good news

Harefield Gazette - - OPINION - SYED KAMALL MEP for Lon­don MARTIN CHALK Bury Street, Ruis­lip

I WAS pleased to hear Boris John­son’s an­nounce­ment that the ma­jor­ity of our Met Of­fi­cers on the beat will be get­ting body-worn cam­eras within the next year.

This is good news for Lon­don­ers, not only mak­ing our com­mu­ni­ties safer places to live, but also al­low­ing lo­cal peo­ple to hold the po­lice to ac­count.

I hope that the Metropoli­tan Po­lice will draw up work­able rules that tell of­fi­cers when they need to have that cam­era switched on, so that as lo­cal res­i­dents we can still have the con­fi­dence to ap­proach our lo­cal neigh­bour­hood bobby for a pri­vate con­ver­sa­tion when we want.

Lady Doreen Lawrence, whose son Stephen was mur­dered in a racist at­tack in 1993, has sug­gested that these cam­eras should be switched on dur­ing ev­ery stop-and­search to en­sure they are con­ducted ap­pro­pri­ately.

Mean­while these cam­eras could re­sult in huge sav­ings in po­lice and court time. If they work well and are not seen as a threat, over time we may be able to roll them out to other front­line work­ers – such as trans­port and health work­ers – who we rely on to keep Lon­don safe and mov­ing.

space by al­low­ing long grass to grow, and plant­ing ‘mid­dle aged, keep off the grass’ wild­flow­ers is di­rectly against the wishes of the orig­i­nal donors and runs counter to sup­port­ing a healthy and en­er­getic lifestyle.

I sus­pect this has more to do with the nimby cam­paign against hockey and young peo­ple, than pro­mot­ing wildlife and flow­ers.

In the same edi­tion, there is high praise for the coun­cil in pro­mot­ing ‘fam­ily friendly’, well main­tained green space.

These spa­ces must be “wel­com­ing, com­mu­nity ori­ented, friendly to the en­vi­ron­ment, well-man­aged and clean”.

Per­haps the coun­cil could be con­sis­tent in its pol­icy across the bor­ough and at the same time re­turn to the clear in­tent of the Kings

Col­lege Play­ing Fields trust deed.

They need to stop mid­dle aged, spoil sports from block­ing the full use of open space by those wish­ing to play sport, run around or just pic­nic. Mow the grass regularly in the sum­mer on the Play­ing Fields, please!

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