Driver law change not mentioned by Transport Minister
29 January 2019
Jesse Norman MP and Minster of State for Transport was due at the Police Federation Roads Policing Conference today to address delegates but due to Parliamentary pressures was unable to attend. He sent a video message instead.
In the short three-minute video he didn’t mention the key issue that attendees to the conference were waiting to hear – that progress was being made by the Government to bring about change in the legislation that would offer better protection to police officers involved in driving incidents while pursuing criminals or responding to calls. Instead Mr Norman gave an update on three initiatives involving crash reporting, roadside breathalyser testing kits and research into the causes of road collisions.
After the Federation's seven years of campaigning to bring about a positive change in the law that would better protect police drivers, the lack of an update left members and attendees feeling frustrated and let down.
Speaking after Mr Norman’s video address Dave Blundell, the Police Federation's roads policing lead said: “The Government has for the past seven years kicked around the issue of bringing about legislative change that would see police officers involved in pursuits being better protected.
“What we have been campaigning for is to ensure that officers are legally protected in doing the job they are asked to do. It was disappointing that the Minister not only cancelled his attendance at short notice but didn't even mention this important issue for our members."
A representative for Mr Norman reassured delegates that a lot was going on behind the scenes and that it wasn't appropriate for the Minister to give an update on this issue as it's a Home Office lead project.
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