Anti-racism / Coronavirus / Policing

Liberty warns new police powers are ripe for abuse and could undermine community response to pandemic

Posted on 30 Mar 2020

Gracie Bradley, Policy and Campaigns Manager at Liberty, said: “The powers introduced last week, without parliamentary scrutiny, are very broad, handing extraordinary new powers to the police. Affording police such extensive power to interfere in our lives is particularly concerning for communities that are already over-policed and are likely to bear the brunt of these new measures.

“Despite the broad scope of these powers, we’ve seen various incidents of police going even further – and beyond their lawful remit. This makes it impossible for people to know how to comply with these new rules, and challenge police when they overreach.

“There has also been a counter-productive lack of clarity in Government statements on these rules.

“There have been amazing community responses to this pandemic, and people have shown they are willing to change the way they live – but that goodwill, and the broader aim of protecting public health, will be undermined by harsh and heavy handed policing.”

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