Policing outside of parliament

MQT on 2019-02-25
Session date: 
February 25, 2019
Question By: 
Unmesh Desai
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


I was concerned to see the lack of action taken by Metropolitan Police Officers outside of Parliament following the abuse of MPs and other public figures. I welcome the comments made by Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu in an interview with LBC radio in which he said: ‘We needed to be more assertive, we’ve put that in place. I think nobody should be prevented from going about their normal business and getting into their normal place of work whether a parliamentarian or not. What we saw happen on television was unacceptable and we should have been more assertive.” Do you agree with these comments and will you offer your full backing to Metropolitan Police Service officers when legitimate protest strays into illegal activity such as harassment and public order offences?


Policing outside of parliament

Policing outside of parliament

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I agree with Assistant Commissioner Basu and utterly condemn the actions of those using intimidating language and behaviour to bully Members of Parliament, journalists and civil servants going about their daily business. I am a firm believer in freedom of speech, but the behaviour of this minority - simply because others dare to have a different opinion about our relationship with the European Union – is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

I have been in touch with the Met Commissioner to discuss the police response to this issue, which will be to facilitate peaceful protest and deal firmly with any incident of harassment and abuse that is a criminal offence