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Police chief 'disappointed' officers used

Discussion in 'News from the UK, Europe and the rest of the World' started by KeithAngel, Sep 6, 2019.

  1. KeithAngel

    KeithAngel 2063 Lifetime Member

    Police chief 'disappointed' officers used as backdrop for party political speech by PM
    The chief constable of West Yorkshire police, John Robins, has said he was “disappointed” to see his officers used as a backdrop to a party political event staged by Boris Johnson yesterday, something that had not been agreed in advance. In a statement, Robins said:

    I am pleased that we were chosen as the focal point of the national recruitment campaign launch, but the good news of extra officers was overshadowed by the media coverage of other events.

    It was the understanding of West Yorkshire police that any involvement of our officers was solely about police officer recruitment. We had no prior knowledge that the speech would be broadened to other issues until it was delivered.

    Minutes before the speech, we were told that [a planned visit to the National Police Air Service] and subsequent brief to a small media pool had been cancelled. I was therefore disappointed to see my police officers as a backdrop to the part of the speech that was not related to recruitment.

    The shadow policing minister, Louise Haigh, has written to the Cabinet Office asking why the police were used for a highly political speech.

    She pointed out that, by his own admission, Johnson’s speech was party political.

    Haigh wrote: “Not only was the precious time of these officers wasted, either by diverting them from their duties or depriving them of much-needed rest, but through no fault of their own they were put in an intolerable position by the nakedly party-political direction the event took.”

    She added: “Police regulations are clear that they are strictly non-party political and cannot give the perception of such.”


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