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Radman

BBC Metrolink to use undercover staff to tackle bye-law breaches

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Radman

Undercover staff will ride on Greater Manchester's trams in bid to stop "inconsiderate and ignorant behaviour".

Current bye-laws prohibit swearing, smoking, being drunk and littering.

The stricter approach, which begins in January, will see people breaking the bye-laws being "far more likely" to face prosecution, Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) said.

TfGM said 520 breaches were reported between 15 July 2017 and 21 July 2018 but no prosecutions were brought.

The laws already allow for both a potential prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000.

 

'Message is clear'

 

A TfGM spokeswoman said Metrolink staff were being trained to collect evidence in accordance with the Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) and would be deployed from 1 January on the network "both in uniform and plain clothes".

She said the PACE training could also mean offenders being formally cautioned.

Criminal behaviour, such as violence or theft, would continue to be dealt with in conjunction with Greater Manchester Police, she said.

TfGM's head of Metrolink, Danny Vaughn, said the message to people breaking bye-laws was that "there will be consequences for their actions".

"It is unacceptable that people should have their journey experience on Metrolink spoiled by the inconsiderate and ignorant behaviour of others," he said.

"The bye-laws exist to prevent this from happening so our message is clear - from January you are far more likely to be prosecuted and fined if you choose to ignore or flaunt them."

The new approach will be proceeded by a two-month campaign, reminding passengers of the network's bye-laws.

 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-46182850

 

 

Now whilst I'm all for byelaws being looked into... Lord knows I do love a good byelaw... I also generally like the idea of local authorities both public and private stepping up and taking on more responsibility to ensure their areas of control are properly protected and rules are enforced BUT with all that said I can see this being recipe for disaster...

 

It is hard enough for non-warranted uniformed officers to gain compliance from the public... Just what chance does a 'plain clothed' officer from a transport firm hope to achieve when they 'badge out' with no additional powers in law to detain outside of any person and no access to PPE?

 

(Atleast I don't believe Sec 16 of the Railway Act applies on Trams, could be wrong of course, so no additional arrest power for fare evasion.)

 

This to me strikes as a bad idea that will lead to complaints and possibly assaults on staff.

 

Thought it'd be worth posting up for discussion.

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obsidian_eclipse

90% (from experience) of the time our wardens try and enforce a power in our local town it results in the police being called, either because the person is uncooperative or become violent. It will be interesting to see what happens, particularly as they are dealing with people who are possibly swearing as a matter of course and don't really care what people think anyway.

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Radman
1 hour ago, obsidian_eclipse said:

90% (from experience) of the time our wardens try and enforce a power in our local town it results in the police being called, either because the person is uncooperative or become violent. It will be interesting to see what happens, particularly as they are dealing with people who are possibly swearing as a matter of course and don't really care what people think anyway.

Exactly.

As a cop more often than not if you're called to someone causing ASB shouting and swearing, becoming abusive to a guard over a ticket or something like that you KNOW pretty much there is a good chance you'll probably end up locking that person up for a public order offence or whatever simply because if they're acting up like that anyway they're the kind of person that doesn't give a stuff to begin with.

I can't see this working at all if I'm being honest.

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David

Shortage of police officers aside I see no real problem with this.

In fact, I fully support all attempts to reduce/stop anti-social behaviour. Stop people doing the small things, you might stop them moving on to the bigger ones. In any event, the message should be sent out.

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