Friday, April 16, 2021

Luisa Porritt: The police should be a service not a force

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The website Left Foot Forward reports on the plans of Luisa Porritt, the Liberal Democrat London mayoral candidate, to give London safer streets:

She is calling for a shift in policing in the capital, following the heavy-handed policing of the vigil for Sarah Everard last month, as well as long-standing concerns over racist policing in the capital.

Under Porritt’s plans for the capital, London would see:

  • A return to 'community policing', including doubling the number of dedicated ward officers. There has been growing concern about officers being ‘parachuted in’ from Scotland Yard to situations that should be handled locally
  • A 'London Youth Service' established to help coordinate andimprove access to activities foryoung people after school.
  • An end to the use of Section 60 'suspicionless' stop and search – which disproportionately hits black communities – and blocking the rollout of facial recognition technology.
  • "Effectively deciminalising the possession of cannabis" – Liberal Democrats will encourage the Metropolitan Police to use the discretion it has available to stop arrests for cannabis posession, and campaign for a legal, regulated market for the drug. Sadiq Khan has pledged to set up a commission to look at legalising cannabis (a power he does not hold), but has not come out in favour of legalisation.

All good stuff, and I hope to see these ideas implemented far beyond London soon.

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