25 August 2011 — Manifesto Club
In the wake of the riots, home secretary Theresa May proposed broad new police powers ‘to impose a general curfew in a particular area’. Other politicians proposed powers to block social network sites, or to ban face coverings.
As we outlined in a Manifesto Club statement – there is absolutely no need for more police powers. The basic power of arrest for criminal damage and theft was all that was needed: yet this power was woefully applied.
Worse, open-ended powers (as with on-the-spot fines or dispersal orders) tend to be used in a petty way against perfectly innocent people. See our article, ‘Policing the Innocent, Ignoring the Riotous‘.