Friday, 18 June 2010

Police mislead public over spy cameras

Press release

Salma Yaqoob calls for action over police officers who have misled public over surveillance cameras

Respect Party Leader and Sparkbrook councillor Salma Yaqoob said:

'Birmingham Safety Partnership have accepted that the public was not consulted over the introduction of surveillance cameras and said they will be covered up and not activated. Their apology is a step in the right direction.

But this is not the end of the matter. The police have admitted that more cameras are hidden, but the BSP press release makes no mention of them at all. There is also a widespread feeling in the community that the police have deliberately misled the public.

There are three meetings a month in Sparkbrook ward between the police, residents and councillors. The police had every opportunity to consult with the public about this issue but chose not to. Indeed, not only did they fail to properly consult with local residents and councillors, they also failed to consult with the Cabinet Member for Equalities and Human Resources.

By acting in such an underhand manner the police have seriously undermined any trust they have built up in the community. It is going to take a lot more to restore that trust than a temporary cover up of the cameras.

The public have spoken. They want these cameras removed. And the police now need to take urgent action to recover the confidence and trust of the community. They should start by holding to account those officers who deliberately misled us.'


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