Anyone who wants to wear a uniform...
PHOTOGRAPHERS - please let us know of your experiences with the policing of the Bush visit in November. We particularly want to hear about experiences with Police Community Support Officers.
Members already report being asked "Do you have a permit to take pictures?" on the day. It seems the PCSOs in question had never seen a press pass before, either. In once case, photographers were rescued from an attempt to move them on by a proper police officer, to whom credit.
The Freelance is inexorably reminded of the maxim that anyone who wants to wear a uniform should be forbidden from doing so - and that a large part of the point of PCSOs, from David Blunkett's point of view, is to save on training costs. The NUJ is contacting the Metropolitan Police and the Association of Chief Police Officers to ask that this be remedied.
Tell your tales online at www.londonfreelance.org/policing - or fax the Freelance Office on 020 7278 1812 if you prefer.
Please say what legislation was mentioned. The union is also keen to find out whether the Terrorism Act is being cited as a reason for stopping, searching or detaining journalists.