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Thread: UK minister aims to reassure photographers

  1. #1

    Default UK minister aims to reassure photographers

    UK minister aims to reassure photographers

    The UK Policing and Crime Minister has reasserted that anti-terrorism should not be used to stop photographers and photojournalists. In a meeting with a Parliamentary photography group and journalists, David Hanson MP said the Sections 44 and 58A of the 2000 Terrorist Act should not be 'used to stop ordinary people taking photos or to curtail legitimate journalistic activity'. He also said guidance to that effect has been provided to the UK police forces, advising that these powers should not be used to stop innocent members of the public, tourists and journalists.

    Press statement

    Policing and Crime Minister David Hanson MP said:

    "I recently met with Austin Mitchell MP, members of the Parliamentary All Party Photography Group and representatives of the photographic press and the Royal Photographic Society to discuss the issue of counter terrorism powers and offences in relation to photography.

    "I welcomed the opportunity to reassure all those concerned with this issue that we have no intention of Section 44 or Section 58A being used to stop ordinary people taking photos or to curtail legitimate journalistic activity.

    "Guidance has been provided to all police forces advising that these powers and offences should not be used to stop innocent member of the public, tourists or responsible journalists from taking photographs.

    "These powers and offences are intended to help protect the public and those on the front line of our counter terrorism operations from terrorist attack. For the 58A offence to be committed, the information is of a kind likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism.
    "I have committed to writing to Austin Mitchell MP to reinforce this message and to follow-up on the representations made to me at today's meeting.”
    I hope that our government can do likewise... The general attitude and mentality by some quarters relating to photography is really outdated.
    Last edited by diCam; 11th March 2010 at 12:26 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: UK minister aims to reassure photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by diCam View Post
    UK minister aims to reassure photographers



    I hope that our government can do likewise... The general attitude and mentality by some quarters relating to photography is really outdated.
    head say and hand do seems to be different actions..
    anyone knows if their defence industries bans camera phones on their premises as well?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: UK minister aims to reassure photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by diCam View Post
    I hope that our government can do likewise... The general attitude and mentality by some quarters relating to photography is really outdated.
    I strongly suspect you do not want to be in the situation whereby the Singapore government needs to do likewise. You should understand the situation in the UK before hoping you have the same in Singapore, because in all honesty, you probably don't want our situation.

    This is not the first guideline sent down to the troops, and in fairness the police force is generally pretty sound about application, the trouble lies with the fact that the powers are discretionary and the "guideline" issued doesn't change anything.

    The police have powers to act on people using photography as part of terrorist activities if they believe them to be engaged in such activities. This guideline says, don't hassle people who are going about their daily, non-terrorist activities. That was never the problem unless you believe the police were hassling people just for the sake of it without any belief that they were terrorists. The issue is the police jumping to this conclusion too quickly, and this guideline doesn't say anything to the contrary.

    In fairness to the police, the vast majority of incidents seem to stem from PCSOs at some point, and the question is whether their voluntary nature, less intensive training, less exposure to guidelines such as this one, make them more likely to jump to the conclusion that someone with a camera is using it for malicious purposes. Or it could just be aggravated by a lack of respect shown by the subject when confronted by a PCSO, compared to a full time police officer.

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    Senior Member +evenstar's Avatar
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    Default Re: UK minister aims to reassure photographers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jed View Post
    I strongly suspect you do not want to be in the situation whereby the Singapore government needs to do likewise. You should understand the situation in the UK before hoping you have the same in Singapore, because in all honesty, you probably don't want our situation.

    This is not the first guideline sent down to the troops, and in fairness the police force is generally pretty sound about application, the trouble lies with the fact that the powers are discretionary and the "guideline" issued doesn't change anything.

    The police have powers to act on people using photography as part of terrorist activities if they believe them to be engaged in such activities. This guideline says, don't hassle people who are going about their daily, non-terrorist activities. That was never the problem unless you believe the police were hassling people just for the sake of it without any belief that they were terrorists. The issue is the police jumping to this conclusion too quickly, and this guideline doesn't say anything to the contrary.

    In fairness to the police, the vast majority of incidents seem to stem from PCSOs at some point, and the question is whether their voluntary nature, less intensive training, less exposure to guidelines such as this one, make them more likely to jump to the conclusion that someone with a camera is using it for malicious purposes. Or it could just be aggravated by a lack of respect shown by the subject when confronted by a PCSO, compared to a full time police officer.
    for those interested PCSO = Police Community Support Officer

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Police_...upport_Officer
    eat. drink. shoot

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