May 31, 2011

Call for EDL to help fund Blackburn demonstration bill

The English Defence League should contribute to the cost of policing its demonstrations, a committee heard.

Lancashire Police have applied to the Home Office for a reimbursement of the money spent on keeping the peace and preventing disorder at the Blackburn protest and counter-demo on April 2. The operation was described as Lancashire’s biggest ever and cost £500,000 on officers’ pay alone. Other estimates have put the bill closer to £1million with other factors such as loss to businesses taken into account.

County councillor and Lancashire Police Authority member Tony Jones said at the recent meeting that the EDL and similar groups should be treated like football clubs who pay the local force to oversee their games. He said: “If this is going to continue, why should the people of Lancashire have to foot the bill? Why should we lose policing in areas we want to spend money on when we’re having to abstract officers to police these organisations?”

Chief Constable Steve Finnigan confirmed he had since written to the Home Office to ask for a contribution. He said: “It has cost us an awful lot of money. I’ve raised it with Sir Hugh Orde [president of the Association of Chief Police officers] and the Home Office who are looking at the impact on forces around the country.

“There is the argument that this is the price of democracy. But it is getting very expensive and abstracting operational staff who could otherwise be doing important work. It is a big demand on the constabulary.”

Blackburn Citizen


La Di Da Gunner Graham said...

Let's not fall for that one.

The fascists could easily be stopped by enforcing current laws against the incitement of racial hatred.

The idea of forcing groups to pay for demonstrations is a state/plod sponsored red herring.

If this gets traction they'll be trying to charge workers for going on strike next.

Echelon_g26 said...

The Associaction of Chief Police Officers is a private limited company it is not an official body. If you privatise policing in this manner you must expect it to cost these ridiculous sums.

I expect the next suggestion will be to bill the UAF counter demonstrators. Then those who demonstrate against cuts....and so on....

Anonymous said...

Sadly the EDL wasn't responsible for these despite the conspiracy theory knocking around here and other forums at the time:

Anti-fascists must oppose bigots of all stripes.

Anonymous said...

Great idea! Bankrupt the fuckers!

tony tattoo said...

Alan "Final Solution" Lake should be invoiced, as he is the moneyman, and has many billions in his bank account.

If not, what about Yaxley Lennon, and his mechandising money? Or is it stashed into secret bank accounts avoiding taxes like you-know-who!

Hopefully all police forces will follow suit.

Maybe Wetherspoons PLC could pay some of the EDL bills, after all, they help them to get pissed off their little immature minds.

Kev Scott loves The Jam said...

If the plod are so miffed at the cost then they should enforce a section 14 specifiying:
a) the numbers of people who may take part, (make it a nice round 5)
b) the location of the assembly, say in the middle of a field
c) its maximum duration. 3 minutes, tops

They could get a judge to allow it by stating that the cost of a full demo will affect policing of the area in the future due to cash limitations.