The English Football League is an international league competition, featuring several top domestic league clubs from England and Wales.In recent years, the EFL has seen a growth in popularity, particularly in Britain and overseas nations such as Australia.As in its continental counterparts, the English Football League features a qualifying system that sees lower league clubs move up to the higher division.Each team is then assigned a number of points (a loss causes one point), based on the number of wins they have had during their developmental leagues.At the end of each season, the team with the most points wins, while the bottom three teams are relegated to the next ผลบอลสด.The EFL was formed by the English Football League Premier Division, which is based in London.A tournament is regularly held to determine the title winner, known as the ELO (ends of league) competition.The latest tournament, which was held in January, saw Manchester City tops the table after a penalty shoot-out following a foul against Arsenal.
The conservative marketing firm Rally Forge posed as a leftist organization called American Progress Now as part of the scheme, The Guardian reported.
As force charges proceed to rocket and as we are generally being encouraged to eliminate the measure of energy we use, twofold coating is quick turning into a fundamental expansion to any home.There is no lack of window organizations all through Great Britain.A portion of the main ones publicize their administrations in TV advertisements, in public papers and magazines and have remains at area shows and presentations.More modest, more neighborhood organizations show up in the need promotions segments, or push fliers through your entryway, promising how they can help you and how they can upgrade your home.So it is vital to search around and get in any event three statements from various organizations.There are exacting guidelines covering the establishment of twofold coating and in England and Wales it is covered by the FENSA conspire which guarantees any work is agreeable with building guidelines and is trustworthy and safe.
As of 2021, there are around 1,600 licensed insolvency practitioners (IPs) in the UK; that doesn’t include the thousands of support staff in the background that help every single one of the UK’s IP in providing comprehensive, professional and highly-experienced insolvency practitioner services for businesses and individuals across the country.But what is involved in delivering insolvency practitioner services and exactly what services do IPs provide?Let’s take a deeper look into the role of an IP.What is an insolvency practitioner?Let’s start with an explanation of what an insolvency practitioner is – it is someone that is qualified, licensed and authorised to act on behalf of a person, partnership or company that is either insolvent, as well as a solvent company.Insolvency practitioners generally work within a law firm, an accountant or a specialist insolvency practice.To practice as an IP, they must:Have passed the relevant insolvency, or JEIB (Joint Insolvency Examination Board), exams.They must be licensed with one of the UK’s insolvency practice governing bodies, such as the Insolvency Practitioners Association (IPA) or R3.They have to have sufficient experience in handling insolvency work.They have to not only meet the regulator’s strict requirements but also prove they are ‘fit and proper’ to act as an IP.The ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) is the largest regulator in the UK.When an IP is licensed with a regulator, they have been given the authority to advise on and take on IP appointments in formal insolvency procedures, such as voluntary and compulsory liquidations, company administrations and receiver-ships, bankruptcy and individual voluntary arrangements, as well as solvent liquidations, i.e.
Boris Johnson has signalled he could be ready to sign off on tariff-free access for Australian farmers to the UK amid a Cabinet rift over a potential post-Brexit trade deal.The prime minister dismissed warnings that allowing the cost-free import of Australian beef and lamb could harm British farmers by insisting that critics are “grossly underestimating” UK agriculture’s ability to harness global trade.But it comes after the National Farmers Union (NFU) warned that any trade deal must be balanced or there is a risk that British farming will suffer “irreversible damage”.The issue is at the heart of a reported Cabinet rift over the future of the economy after Brexit.The Financial Times reported that environment secretary George Eustice and Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove, who are sympathetic to the NFU position, are at loggerheads with trade secretary Liz Truss and Brexit minister Lord Frost, who favour tariff-free trade.SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford seized on the issue at prime minister’s questions, accusing Johnson of “planning to throw our farmers and crofters under the Brexit bus”.“This deal would be the final nail in the coffin for many Scottish crofters and farmers, it will end a way of life that has endured for generations prime minister. “I know that many of the prime minister’s Tory colleagues privately agree with me and want him to pull back from this deal.“So will the prime minister finally listen, think again and ditch a deal that will send our farmers down under?”Responding, Johnson said: “First of all he’s totally wrong about what he says about the fisheries because in fact there are massive opportunities for fisheries for the whole of the UK as we take back control of our territorial waters.”He added: “He is grossly underestimating the ability of the people of this country, the agricultural communities of this country, the farming industry to make the most of free trade. This is a country that grew successful and prosperous on free trade on exporting around the world.“Our food exports are second to none, he should be proud of that, we should be celebrating that and all he does is call for us to pull up the drawbridge and go back into the EU to be run by Brussels, that’s his manifesto and I think the people of this country have decisively rejected it.”Related...Don't Get 'Carried Away' With Lockdown Easing, Says Cabinet MinisterOperation Un-Mask: Will We Ever Stop Wearing Face Coverings?
Boris Johnson will apply to a county court to “strike out” a claim against him for a £535 unpaid debt because it is “totally without merit”, Downing Street has said.Private Eye reported on Wednesday that the official register for county court judgments (CCJs) in England and Wales shows the prime minister was served with a notice of the judgment in October 26, 2020. A search of the county court judgments database shows the “unsatisfied record” registered to Johnson at “10 Downing Street”.The official court records do not state who the creditor is, nor the nature of the debt.County court judgments can be issued if someone takes court action against an individual and they do not respond.The judgment means the court has formally decided the money is owed, according to the government site.But it appears the claim is not genuine.Responding later on Wednesday, a No.10 spokesperson said: “An application will be made for an order to set aside the default judgment, to strike out the claim and for a declaration that the claim is totally without merit.”The judgment was issued less than a fortnight after a Conservative donor told the party he was donating £58,000 in relation to refurbishments at Johnson’s Downing Street flat. No. 10 denied there was any connection between the CCJ and the flat revamp. Related...Corbyn Calls Starmer 'Weak' For Blaming Labour's Election Woes On HimNo.10 Admits Secret 'Lessons Learned' Review Of Covid Pandemic Has Been ConductedBoris Johnson Confirms Full Statutory Inquiry Into Covid Pandemic
Campaigners have expressed frustration after the government excluded the repeal of the 19th century Vagrancy Act from the Queen’s Speech – despite saying this year it should be “consigned to history”.In February, housing secretary Robert Jenrick said the legislation, introduced in 1824 during the Napoleonic Wars, should be replaced.But Boris Johnson’s wide-ranging legislative agenda for the new parliament made no reference to the Vagrancy Act, leading to accusations his government was “failing the homeless”.It comes amid concerns the act, introduced to target destitute soldiers sleeping on the streets and which includes references to carts and wagons, has been used by police officers to “criminalise” homeless people during the Covid-19 pandemic.HuffPost UK reported how forces in England and Wales made 361 charges that led to court hearings between April and September last year using two sections of the Act that relate to begging and rough sleeping.Last week, a letter signed by over 60 parliamentarians – including the Bishop of Manchester, and MPs and peers from five parties – urged Jenrick to include repealing the law, saying: “A failure to ensure the scrapping of the act in the next session would deal a blow to cross-party efforts to address the homelessness crisis.”Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran, a vocal campaigner against the law, said: “The government is failing the homeless today.“It’s still the law for rough sleepers to be arrested and prosecuted for the crime of not being able to afford a roof over their head.“It’s a moral outrage that a Victorian-era law continues to punish those who desperately need help.“The government are putting their crackdown on protests and draconian voter ID law over repeal of the Vagrancy Act.”Jon Sparkes, chief executive of homelessness charity Crisis, said: “No one should be criminalised for being homeless and it is very disappointing that the UK government has not yet scrapped this appalling act. “It does nothing to tackle rough sleeping and only drives people further away from support.“Repealing the act has cross party support and we stand ready to support the UK government on the legislation to consign it to history.” The government promised to repeal the act in 2018. A year later, a review was announced with the expectation a report would be published in March 2020.The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has been contacted for comment.Related...Vagrancy Act Should Be Repealed, Government Says Of 19th Century LawPolice Using 'Archaic' Vagrancy Act To 'Criminalise' Homelessness During PandemicSecurity Guards In Central London Accused Of Filming Homeless People While They Sleep
The government has been condemned for its slow response to the cladding scandal after a fire at a London block covered in the same flammable material as Grenfell Tower left than 40 people in need of medical treatment.London Fire Brigade said two adults had gone to hospital after suffering the effects of smoke inhalation and a further 38 adults and four children were treated at the scene after the fire ripped through the 19-storey New Providence Wharf development, near Canary Wharf, on Friday morning.Approximately 22% of the building’s facade features aluminium composite material polyethylene (ACM PE) cladding panels, which were found to be a key factor in the 2017 Grenfell fire.The latest official figures show that 111 residential buildings in England have yet to have ACM fully removed almost four years after the disaster, which killed 72 people. In the wake of the fire, the government vowed that dangerous cladding would be replaced on all high rise buildings by June 2020. By that time, 300 buildings were still vulnerable.Some 358 buildings no longer have ACM cladding systems after the government committed £5 billion to make buildings safe, but the scandal has since widened as a plethora of faults have been found in people’s homes and more types of cladding have been deemed unsuitable.There are 111 high-rise residential and publicly-owned buildings still with ACM cladding systems unlikely to meet building regulations in England." src="" />Labour’s shadow housing secretary Thangam Debbonaire said: “The government must take full responsibility. Ministers promised this dangerous cladding would all be removed by June last year. They failed to keep this promise.“It is a disgrace that, four years on, this tower still had the same cladding as Grenfell – and four years on, we are yet again seeing the horrifying results of inaction.”Survivors and bereaved relatives from Grenfell have told the government “enough is enough”.Survivors’ and relatives’ group Grenfell United said in a statement: “We are horrified by the news of the fire at the New Providence Wharf today. When will the government take this scandal seriously? Enough is enough.“The government promised to remove dangerous cladding by June 2020 – it has completely failed its own target and every day that goes by lives are at risk. Today more people have lost their homes in another terrifying fire.“The government needs to treat this as an emergency and stop stonewalling residents who are raising concerns. No more games, no more excuses.”Damage to a 19-storey tower block in New Providence Wharf, east London." src="" />The cladding crisis has deepened during a stand-off between developers, private freeholders, who own the buildings, and government over who is responsible for removing the flammable material.In the meantime, blameless freeholders who own the flats have been left with a financial and emotional burden, which gets worse each day.Aside from the fear of living in a building liable to catch fire, an increasing number of buildings have been forced to introduce expensive 24/7 fire patrols to stay safe. In February, HuffPost UK revealed 794 blocks of flats in England and Wales have so-called “waking watches” in place, which are costing some individuals as much as £1,500 a month – the same as a  second mortgage payment.We reported last week how the government has failed to recover a penny of the £450m it is giving to landlords to fix unsafe cladding – despite promising to get tough with those responsible for installing the highly dangerous material.Last week, the government’s Fire Safety Bill, introduced in response to the deadly 2017 blaze, is set to leave hundreds of thousands of leaseholders paying to remove dangerous cladding from their buildings.Although the Government had insisted that leaseholders would not bear the cost of removing the flammable materials, critics say the Bill will leave people liable for costs of up to £50,000. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “The spectre of the tragedy at Grenfell still hangs over our city. Today we have seen again why residents in buildings with flammable cladding are living in fear.“It is vital that government, developers, building owners and regional authorities work together to urgently remove the cladding from every affected building.”Work to replace the cladding was “under way” and the main contractor had been due to take possession of the site on Monday, according to building developer Ballymore.Pictures and videos on social media show part of the building engulfed in flames, with thick grey smoke pouring out of the block, several stories high.One resident posted on Instagram: “When your building has the same cladding as Grenfell Tower. Oh my god.”The fire comes just days after the introduction of the Government’s post-Grenfell fire safety regulations, which campaigners argue could leave leaseholders paying tens of thousands of pounds to remove cladding on their buildings. Firefighters at the scene in New Providence Wharf in London." src="" />Fire Brigades Union general secretary Matt Wrack said: “It is extremely alarming to see another high-rise building in the heart of London light up in flames.“It should shame this Government that four years on from Grenfell, there are people across the country living in buildings wrapped in flammable cladding.“Time and time again we’ve warned that another Grenfell could be just around the corner unless they prioritise making people’s homes safe.“The pace of removing flammable cladding has been glacial and it’s putting people’s lives at risk. The Government must intervene and take quick and decisive action to end our building safety crisis once and for all.”LFB said parts of the eighth, ninth and 10th floors were alight on the building, adding that it had received 13 calls to the fire.It added: “The brigade was called at 0855. Fire crews from Poplar, Millwall, Shadwell, Plaistow, Whitechapel and surrounding fire stations are at the scene.“The cause of the fire is not known at this stage.”Apsana Begum, the Poplar & Limehouse Labour MP, said: “For years now, constituents at New Providence Wharf, where there are 1,500 apartments, have been left vulnerable and unsafe due to numerous fire safety and building safety defects and the fact that ACM cladding remains on these buildings.“The fire this morning shows just how serious this issue is and why constituents have been right to continue to raise alarm bells for so many months and having met with them again I know just how terrified they must be feeling at this time.”“The developer Ballymore have promised action, but to date, constituents have not received information on fire engineer reports and details of any remediation works.”She added: “It is simply not good enough for developers to say that they cannot act or that they are and then do nothing. They must act now and the government must act now and hold them accountable in order to protect residents.”Sir Ed Davey, leader of the Liberal Democrats, tweeted: “My thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by this awful fire – and with all those for whom it stirs memories and fears.“It is simply a national scandal that more has not been done by Government to remove this dangerous cladding.”Ballymore said in a statement: “Our thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by this morning’s fire at New Providence Wharf.“The safety of our residents is paramount and we are working closely with the London Fire Brigade.“We can confirm that the fire was quickly brought under control by the Fire Brigade and is now extinguished. Our response team are on-site to support residents and assist with alternative accommodation where necessary.“We will update once we have more information.”Related...Cladding Culprits Are Getting £450m From The Taxpayer. They Haven't Repaid A PennyCladding Scandal Grows As Expensive Fire Patrols Almost Double In A YearGovernment Misses Deadline To Remove All Grenfell-Style Cladding
Succession is a major issue for many venture firms. Institutional investors, founders — even reporters — often get attached to senior members of a team, and when one of those individuals decides to hang up his or her cleats, it can be tricky for the rest of the partnership. For its part, Emergence, a highly […]
Debt impacts millions of us in the UK – and for many families and individuals, the pandemic will have only made things worse. Factors that can push people into debt include major life changes (of which there have been many this past year), becoming – and staying – unwell, not getting paid, living on a low income or needing to buy new things.If you’re kept awake at night by thoughts of your bank balance, or struggling to fend off panic attacks every time your bills go out, know that you’re not alone. Around eight million people in the UK are thought to be living in problem debt.A government scheme, called Breathing Space, hopes to help thousands of people struggling with such debt. Those who are eligible will be offered financial advice and given respite from debt enforcement action over a 60-day period. As part of the scheme, which has the potential to help 700,000 people in England and Wales, people will receive free debt advice to help them begin the long, but ultimately rewarding, journey out of the red. Past research by the Money Advice Service found 65% of people who received regulated debt advice were repaying their debts or had repaid them in full within three to six months.Being given breathing space from debt collectors is crucial to getting back on track, as research by debt charity StepChange found six in 10 people who weren’t protected from interest, charges and new enforcement action went on to take out even more credit to cope.What exactly is Breathing Space?Breathing Space is a free government scheme that aims to relieve some of the pressure of dealing with your creditors, so you can focus on getting professional advice and getting out of debt.The hope is you’ll be able to get set up with a debt solution without worrying about being chased for payment or incurring extra charges. The scheme isn’t a payment holiday, so you’ll still have to continue paying your debts during this time (if you can afford to do so), but it does prevent action from being taken against you if you’re unable to pay.John Glen, economic secretary to the Treasury, said of the launch: “This scheme will give people a breathing space from charges, distressing letters and bailiff visits, so they can tackle their problem debt with support from a professional debt adviser.” Who is eligible?You must live in England or Wales and you must owe at least one qualifying debt to a creditor. Most debts can be included in a Breathing Space arrangement.There are some factors that might make you ineligible for the scheme, however.  For example, you can only access Breathing Space once in a 12-month period, and you are ineligible if you’re already on a Debt Relief Order (DRO) or an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA). You also must not be an undischarged bankrupt, or subject to an interim order.The best way to find out if you’re eligible for the free scheme is to ring up a debt advice service, which will be able to submit an application on your behalf.Even if you are ineligible, there may be other ways to get help so it’s always worth reaching out for professional advice. You can access free advice through Citizens Advice, the charity Step Change, the Money Advice Service and National Debtline.I’m eligible – now what?You’ll be taken through the application process with a debt advisor. Once registered, the Insolvency Service will contact your creditors who won’t be able to add interest or fees to your debts, or take enforcement action, for 60 days.People using the scheme are urged to: keep up regular payments (for example: rent, mortgage, council tax, insurance payments and utility bills); continue seeking debt advice; and avoid taking out any more credit during the 60 days.During your time on the scheme, you’ll be in touch with a debt advisor who can help you get on top of your debt. They’ll give you advice relevant to your situation and will get you set up with a suitable ‘debt solution’.This could be a debt management plan (DMP), which helps you to manage your debts, paying them off at a more affordable rate; a debt relief order (DRO) which sees debts written off if you have a relatively low level of debt and few assets; or an individual voluntary arrangement (IVA). The latter is a formal agreement allowing you to make affordable payments to your debts, usually over five or six years. At the end of the agreement, any unsecured debt left is written off. Other options for managing debtCreate a monthly budget and stick to it. Figure out what money comes into your account each month and what goes out – are there any direct debits or standing orders you can cancel to give yourself a break? If you have lots of credit card debt, think about switching to a 0% balance transfer card so you can have a break from all of the interest that’s been accruing. Speak to lenders or landlords about the possibility of a mortgage or rent payment holiday.Find out how you can reduce your monthly bills – often simply changing bill provider for a more competitive rate can save you money in the long-term. If you tell your existing provider you’re shopping around, they might offer you a better deal to encourage you to stay.Avoid rent-to-buy schemes on items like household appliances if you can because you could end up paying four times what an item is worth. If you can’t afford to buy an item up front, it’s worth finding out whether other forms of credit might be cheaper in the long run.Related...What It's Like To Actually Live On A Free School Meal 'Hamper'‘We Are Survivors’: A Year On The Covid Front Line For 6 British WomenWant To Dejunk? Here Are The 5 Best Sites To Shift Your StuffStruggling To Save? Here Are Four Top Tips On How To Get StartedMoney-Saving Tips For Every Room In The HouseThis Seven Step Plan Will Freshen Up Your Finances For 2021How 'Buy Now, Pay Later' Schemes Like Klarna Are Changing
An appeal court in California ruled that Amazon is liable for bad products on its platform. Whether these products are from third-party sellers or directly ... The post Amazon is responsible for ALL products on its platform – court rules appeared first on
Questions have been raised over the accountability of the Metropolitan Police after it emerged the force was facing 63 active investigations from the independent watchdog – with some going back years.The figure was provided by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) after a request from HuffPost UK following a series of complaints about the UK’s largest police force in recent months.Our data request initially revealed one investigation still ongoing that was first opened in March 2015, and four cases still active for each of 2018/19 and 2019/20. One of these, involving an officer who hit a vulnerable teenager 34 times with a baton and sprayed her up close with CS gas, was finally concluded on Friday as we published this story.The watchdog, set up out the ashes of the Independent Police Complaints Commission in 2018 to ensure “greater accountability to public”, has an annual budget of around £73m and last year received around 4,300 referrals nationally. Forces must refer the worst incidents to the IOPC – such as if someone dies or is seriously injured following police action – and if they receive a complaint it considers legitimate. The IPOC can also “call in” smaller investigations being carried out by forces into themselves, if they consider incidents to be serious enough.But there are warnings “the system is broken” as the IOPC’s probes into the Met have come into sharp focus this year.In March, the watchdog announced it was launching two separate investigations relating to Sarah Everard, whose death put a global spotlight onto violence against women and girls. One is examining how Wayne Couzens, the serving officer charged with Everard’s murder, came to sustain serious injuries while in custody. The other investigation is examining an “inappropriate” graphic that was allegedly shared by an officer who took part in search operations.Police detain Patsy Stevenson as people gather at a memorial site in Clapham Common Bandstand following the murder of Sarah Everard." src="" />In the last week, the IOPC’s investigations of the Met led to two more developments.On Monday, it announced the Met would face scrutiny over how it handled the disappearance of 19-year-old Richard Okorogheye, whose body was found in Epping Forest, Essex, in April. The watchdog is investigating whether racism played a part in the search following complaints from Okorogheye’s mother, Evidence Joel.“Maybe it’s the culture, my language barrier,” Joel told Channel 4 News, adding that she believed officers considered her to be “one of those African women who was being frantic” and did not immediate take action to find her son.On Wednesday, the Crown Prosecution Service announced two police officers had been charged with misconduct following an IOPC investigation into the circulation of inappropriate photographs of sisters Nicole Smallman, 27, and Bibaa Henry, 46, who had been stabbed to death in a north London park. The watchdog carried out a criminal investigation into allegations that the officers, Pc Deniz Jaffer, 47, and Pc Jamie Lewis, 32, took “non-official and inappropriate photographs” of the crime scene before sharing them on WhatsApp.Bibaa Henry (left) and Nicole Smallman, who were stabbed to death at Fryent Country Park in Wembley in the early hours of June 6." src="" />But the investigations go back a number of years.The longest-running, HuffPost UK understands, relates to the death of Black teenager Stephen Lawrence. In 2015, the Independent Police Complaints Commission announced former Scotland Yard commissioner Lord Stevens would be investigated into claims that documents were not passed to the 1998 Stephen Lawrence public inquiry led by Sir William Macpherson.A referral followed a complaint to the force on behalf of Neville Lawrence, Stephen’s father, that there was a “failure of top rank or very senior officers, including but not limited to the deputy commissioner Sir John Stevens, to provide full, frank and truthful information to the Macpherson Inquiry on the issue of corruption”.It focused on two letters sent by Lord Stevens, but was halted while four former Met officers were investigated over their work on the initial murder investigation. The CPS is still to decide if the four are to be charged, six years after the complaint was opened.Another still ongoing investigation began following British sprinter Bianca Williams accusing the Met of “racial profiling” after she and her partner were stopped and searched by officers in west London in July last year. The European and Commonwealth gold medallist and Ricardo dos Santos, 25, the Portuguese record holder over 400m, were stopped and handcuffed while with their three-month-old baby in Maida Vale.Video footage shared widely on social media showed the pair – who are both Black – being aggressively pulled out of a car by officers. The distressed athlete is heard repeatedly saying: “My son is in the car.”Racist police aren't just in America— Linford Christie (@ChristieLinford) July 4, 2020Met Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick later apologised and launched a review into the use of handcuffs pre-arrest after the vehicle stop.Last year, the watchdog said it made 11 recommendations for the Met to improve its use of stop and search powers after a review of cases found the “legitimacy of stop and searches was being undermined” by a number of issues, including a lack of understanding about the impact of disproportionality and poor communication.In one investigation, a Black man in possession of someone else’s credit card was suspected of having stolen it even after providing a credible explanation. In another case, officers used stop and search powers after brothers Liam and Dijon Joseph, who are Black, fist-bumped, claiming they believed they had been exchanging drugs.The family of Richard Okorogheye have questioned the force's handling of the investigation into his disappearance." src="" />Not all the outstanding cases are so well-known. On Friday, a probe that had only appeared to prompt two write-ups in local media based on an IOPC press release saw a police officer dismissed for hitting a vulnerable teenager 34 times with a baton.The Met said Pc Benjamin Kemp used force that was “utterly inappropriate” on a 17-year-old girl, who was on escorted leave from a mental health unit and had become separated from a group in Newham, east London, in May 2019. CS spray and handcuffs were used on the girl, as well as the baton strikes. Kemp was sacked following a misconduct panel that came after complaints were made by an NHS trust staff member and the girl’s mother.The number of cases has raised concern among politicians. Jenny Jones, a Green party peer and ex-member of the London Police Authority, revealed in 2014 she had been recorded on a database of “domestic extremists” by the Met Police and that officers had been tracking her political movements since 2001.Asked about our findings, she told HuffPost UK: “It is extremely difficult for people to hold the Met Police accountable for their wrongdoing. My own personal experience of being spied on by the Met Police and taking complaints to the IOPC confirms that the system is broken.“The IOPC is massively underfunded and under-resourced. It took them nearly three years to investigate a complaint I brought against multiple police officers, and if I hadn’t been assisted by an excellent legal team then it probably would have taken even longer.“The IOPC is so heavily reliant on gathering witness statements from police officers that unless there is some massively compelling external evidence, it is very hard for the IOPC to actually uphold any complaints.“Unless people obtain justice for legitimate complaints against the police then not only will we have a second rate and potentially corrupt police service with officers regarding themselves as above the law, we will also have a groundswell of public opinion that is alienated from the police and mistrustful of them.”Former police officer Lord Brian Paddick, the Liberal Democrat spokesperson on home affairs in House of Lords, said: “Liberal Democrats have had concerns for some time about what is happening in the Metropolitan Police, particularly around culture and diversity.“Persistent disproportionate focus of stop and search on Black Londoners, particularly when section 60 [a temporary power that lowers the bar for police to be allowed to search people] authorises searches without suspicion, together with a disproportionate focus of internal misconduct on ethnic minority officers and staff, raise serious questions about the culture inside the Met.“The police must foster trust and confidence with all communities if they are to be effective in tackling crime, particularly knife crime.”An IOPC spokesperson said: “We investigate the most serious and sensitive incidents and allegations involving the police in England and Wales. Most complaints about the police are dealt with by the relevant police force.”HuffPost UK has approached the Met for comment.Related...Two Officers Charged Over 'Inappropriate Photos' Of Sisters Killed In ParkDid Racism Hamper Search For Richard Okorogheye?
The CCTV footage shows a man face down on the floor of a police station, handcuffed and unresponsive, as he gasps for breath.Officers are heard laughing and joking while making monkey and chimpanzee noises, apparently unmoved by the desperate plight of the man in front of them.To this day, Christopher Alder’s sister cannot understand how Humberside Police stood by, ignoring her brother’s need for help and mocking him as he died.“They never even gave him a chance,” she says.“They saw me and my family as just Black people that didn’t deserve any respect whatsoever. Christopher didn’t deserve any respect – he was Black, it didn’t matter. And, you know, the whole system has done it.”Christopher, a father and former British Army paratrooper who had served in the Falklands, had been assaulted at a nightclub earlier that evening.Janet has spent decades trying to piece together the events that followed, leaving her brother unconscious on the floor of the custody suite with his trousers around his knees.The UK has not seen a single successful prosecution for murder or manslaughter in relation to a death in police custody since 1969.It is a statistic made even more poignant by the recent, albeit rare, conviction of police officer Derek Chauvin for George Floyd’s murder in the US.The Alders are just one of the many bereaved families campaigning for the same accountability this side of the Atlantic.Their cases involve people who were in need of the police’s help – because they were in a mental health crisis or a victim of crime – but ended up losing their lives. At least 100 involve Black victims. And many involve racial stereotyping by police, families say.The killing of George Floyd in America has thrown a global spotlight on the many people who have died in police custody with no one held to account.Christopher’s case has become emblematic of their fight in the UK.So has that of Sean Rigg, who died in 2008 after being restrained by Metropolitan Police officers during a mental health crisis.His sister Marcia Rigg tells HuffPost UK: “Why I do the work I do is to highlight the fact. People are on the streets for George Floyd in England. But there’s others in the UK and so we had to raise the bar. Do they march shouting ‘Sean Rigg’, ‘Christopher Alder’ and others in the States? Well, watch this space, because that’s what I want.”The families campaign alongside groups such as the National Mikey Powell Memorial Family Fund, set up by the relatives of Michael Lloyd Powell, who was killed in police custody in 2003. It offers support and raises awareness of deaths in custody.The death of Christopher Alder Janet Alder has been “fighting through every arena of state” for more than 20 years to find out what happened to her brother.Speaking of the moment, 22 years later, when she saw footage of Floyd’s death, Janet says: “[It was] that same feeling as when I heard about Christopher. It felt like a stone had been dropped in my stomach and it happened again with George Floyd. “I just thought to myself: it’s not just America. It’s here as well. You know the government wrote a unilateral declaration [that Christopher’s death had been the result of racism] and people have died since. How many deaths have there been here since?”Christopher died on April 1, 1998, after being taken to the custody suite at Queens Gardens police station in Kingston upon Hull. He was 37 and had two sons.The computer programmer and former paratrooper had been taken to hospital following the punch at the nightclub, where his behaviour had changed – potentially due to the fact he had banged his head on a cobbled road.He was dragged outside the hospital by police with his feet trailing, handcuffed behind his back and put into a police van.Janet, 59, who lives in Halifax, says there are discrepancies in different accounts of the journey that followed.“He came out the other side with more severe injuries, with his trousers down to his knees and fully unconscious,” she says.“He’d lost another tooth. He had another cut on his lip, and a cut above his eye that he didn’t have when he was at the hospital earlier on.”Janet believes Christopher was injured in the police van. “Well, I think they beat him,” she says. “I think he was handcuffed behind his back and they beat him, they CS gassed him until he was unconscious, and then he died of respiratory failure due to the fact that he’s been gassed and unable to breathe.”Christopher died in the police station while lying face down with his hands cuffed behind his back. He was surrounded by officers from Humberside Police.Despite an inquest in 2000 finding that his death had been an “unlawful killing”, nobody has yet been held to account.Five police officers stood trial for manslaughter in 2002, alongside misconduct charges, but the trial collapsed and the judge ordered the jury to find the officers not guilty.Later, in a landmark report, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) found four of the officers present when Christopher died had been guilty of the “most serious neglect of duty” amounting to “unwitting racism”.Janet completely disowns this term. “I think it’s just total rubbish,” she says. “If somebody is making monkey and chimpanzee noises, speaking about going on fucking banana boats, that’s racism – there’s nothing unwitting about that.”She fought on taking the case all the way to the European Court of Human Rights in 2011, which forced the government’s hand to issue a statement about Christopher’s death.“Basically the government did a last-minute turnaround and wrote a unilateral declaration saying that Christopher’s death was inhuman and degrading and that it was through racism,” she says.“I just thought: if they’ve admitted it, why are they not doing anything about it? So it’s like an empty gesture. Nothing happened.”Then, in an unthinkable turn of events, the family were told in November 2011 – 13 years after Christopher’s death – that they had buried the wrong body. Instead of Christopher, the body of a 77-year-old woman, Grace Kamara, had been released. The ashes of Christopher’s niece had even been placed in the top soil above what the family thought was her uncle’s grave in the years since.“You know, my goodness,” says Janet. “I was just beginning to try and get myself back together. I’d just got a little job and everything. And then I had a phone call just basically saying that Christopher’s not been buried, and I just couldn’t believe it.”South Yorkshire Police carried out an investigation into the mix-up, but Janet is crowdfunding to continue her own legal action.She believes Christopher’s body was targeted because of her fight to challenge the state.“I think it was because somebody wanted to teach me a lesson,” she says. “But in a way, where they didn’t have the guts to actually do anything to me, by humiliating Christopher and his body, to them it felt like they were doing something to me. I believe that’s what happened.“It’s absolutely disgusting. You’ve got to ask yourself, why did they not think that my family and Grace’s family would feel how they feel?“They saw me and my family as just Black people that didn’t deserve any respect whatsoever.”After 23 years, Janet is confident she has got to the truth of how Christopher died. She says she has access to evidence that hasn’t previously been in the public domain but will be disclosed in a book she is writing about the case.Details similar to those in Christopher’s case were reflected in the fictional story of Lawrence Christopher in the current series of BBC TV drama Line of Duty – seemingly combined with elements of the death of Stephen Lawrence.Asked if Christopher’s death could have happened today, Janet says: “Of course it could. Unless you hold people accountable, without accountability, you can’t have change.”This is why she continues to fight. The impact on her life, though, has been significant: “Quite soul destroying at times.” Her own children “had their mother taken away and they were given back something completely different” because of the time and emotional energy she has devoted to getting justice for Christopher, Janet says." data-caption="Janet campaigning with the film maker Ken Fero, whose documentary on deaths in custody, Ultraviolence, is due for release –" data-rich-caption="Janet campaigning with the film maker Ken Fero, whose documentary on deaths in custody, Ultraviolence, is due for release –" data-credit="Migrant Media" data-credit-link-back="" />“And I just feel that kind of loss,” she says, “because that was taken away from me and my children.“I don’t think I’ve had the opportunity to heal ever, because it’s just been one thing after another, after another, after another, after another. So I’ve not really had any proper psychological help which would help me rationalise things. So it’s just about surviving. You’re surviving what’s going on.”She recently received a grant from the National Mikey Powell Family Fund, which offers financial support to families whose loved ones have died in police custody, and is using this to help write her book.“I think it’s been a brilliant idea,” she says of the fund. “I’m sure other families will say exactly the same, because you can easily be forgotten about, especially if your case is not high-profile. I think that family fund lets you know you’ve got a bit of unity and you’ve got people that care.”The death of Sean RiggThe talented musician and music producer Sean Rigg died after being restrained by Metropolitan Police officers while in the grip of a mental health crisis.The 40-year-old father was suffering from a psychotic episode in the street on August 21, 2008. Concerned about his welfare, staff at the hostel where he had been staying made a series of 999 calls asking for him to be taken somewhere safe.When police arrived on the scene, his older sister Marcia says, they quickly began treating Sean as a criminal instead of taking him somewhere to receive care.“Sean was arrested for theft of his own passport,” she says. “The officers claimed that they did not recognise that he suffered with mental health [issues], and they were unaware of the previous three hours of 999 calls made by the hostel staff.”She adds: “He was behaving very strangely. And it was obvious to members of the public that he was not well. But the police account is that they didn’t see that.”Sean was pinned down by officers in a sequence of events that would prove catastrophic.“He was restrained using excessive force, which an inquest jury found in 2012 was for a period of eight minutes in the prone position, face down, on grass, with four Metropolitan Police officers using excessive force,” says Marcia.“I believe that Sean probably could not breathe at that time because of the excessive force.“We saw that George Floyd died within a little bit longer than that when he was restrained in the same position.”Sean was then taken to Brixton police station in the back of a police van. He was “extremely unwell and not fully conscious” when he was carried to the caged area at the entrance to the custody suite and placed, “handcuffed”, on the floor, the inquest jury found.“The officers claim that Sean did not say a word from start to finish, but we will never know the answer to that,” says his sister. “I honestly believe he would have tried to say ‘I can’t breathe’ and would have been afraid when he died – at the foot of five to six police officers, in a cramped cage, at the entrance to Brixton custody suite, practically naked.”In the 13 years since Sean’s death, his family have been through inquest proceedings, multiple investigations by the IPCC, a criminal trial and police misconduct hearings in their dogged fight for justice. To this day, nobody has been held accountable.Marcia, now 57, who lives in south London, says the family had to fight every step of the way to force the Crown Prosecution Service and the IPCC into action, even struggling to get vital evidence put before the court.“The family had to apply to the coroner just to get access to two photographs that became crucial in establishing what happened to Sean,” she says.“And so we were able to gain access, my legal team, to look at all of the documents. And they had files – the filing cabinet was called ‘unused documents’, I believe it was. They were actually the best evidence, including the photographs of Sean’s restraint.” In 2012, an inquest jury found officers had used “unsuitable” force, placing “unnecessary body weight” on Sean, and that the failings of police had “more than minimally” contributed to his death. The family fought on and as a result of the damning inquest verdict, two independent reviews were launched by the police and the IPCC.In 2015, a Metropolitan Police officer was charged with perjury but unanimously acquitted by a jury. Then the Met brought disciplinary action against five officers, but in 2019 they too were cleared of misconduct over Sean’s death.But Marcia has now revealed to HuffPost UK that there is additional footage from the custody suite – which she believes shows race was a factor in her brother’s death.“Racism is there,” she says, “when you hear the rest of the custody suite [clip] because it’s only a short clip in the public domain.“We have over an hour of custody suite, of what happened on the night, which I’ve never revealed and neither have they – they wouldn’t.”Marcia is now considering her next steps. “What I want is for the case to be reopened,” she says. “That’s my aim. That’s what should happen based on the evidence, but I do not know how that will happen.”More widely, she says the stereotype of the “superhuman Black man” is pervasive among police forces, and that racial stereotyping is part of the systemic prejudice faced by Black people at the hands of officers.“What I do now is to try to show the disproportionality of Black men that die in this way,” she says. “And why is that? That is because they fear Black men.“The perception that they are violent and big and strong and dangerous – big, bad and dangerous, superhuman strength – is bullshit because we are not madder than anybody else and we’re not stronger than anybody else. The reality is that they [Black men] are in fear, because these police can kill them, and they do.”Marcia has campaigned tirelessly in memory of the brother she still remembers vividly.“My brother was lovely, charming, intelligent,” she says. “He was a musician. He was a dancer. He was a martial art person. Most people didn’t know that Sean suffered with mental health [problems] because he managed it as well as you can.“He was an amazing person and I would not want my brother to be remembered, and neither would he want to be remembered, as another Black man in the mental health system that was killed by police.”The impact of deaths like these on families is hard to overstate.On the day Sean died, Marcia was in Birmingham. She had travelled on the spur of the moment after having a strong impulse to visit her father’s grave. Marcia says she suffered a visceral pain at the exact moment Sean died.“I felt this pain to the point at one stage where I was on the floor holding my chest and I didn’t know why,” she says. “And it wasn’t until later that night when we got the call from my sister that the police had come and said that Sean had died. “And when I did go to my father’s grave the next morning, I had to put two roses and two cards and I was devastated. I lied on his grave and I cried. “And then I had to come back right away and changed my ticket to come back to London – and since then, I haven’t stopped.”The ceaseless campaigning has taken a huge toll, but Marcia says it has been important for her to face the officers involved over the years.“I want to face them because I don’t know how they sleep at night, because there are many times that we couldn’t and my mother couldn’t,” she says.“You know, she had to look at her son who was unrecognisable, because he was decomposed after seven weeks. And you know I’ll never forget that picture, so we suffer from post-traumatic stress.”One result of Sean’s case is that all police vans are now equipped with CCTV cameras.But Sean died in similar circumstances to more recent high-profile cases, such as those of Kevin Clarke and Olaseni Lewis, which leaves Marcia questioning whether any lessons were really learned – and fuels her continued fight.“Sean should not have died on that day,” she says. “After all these years, my question is: ‘Why are we here? What lessons have actually been learned?’“Because Sean should not have died at that time. He was suffering a mental health crisis and mental health does not kill you.”The death of Mikey PowellBoth Marcia Rigg and Janet Alder have won small grants from the National Mikey Powell Memorial Family Fund, which received £64,000 in donations after the death of George Floyd and is now running regular rounds of allocations to families.Mikey Powell is another British man whose death has chilling echoes of Floyd’s.The 38-year-old was in mental health crisis when he died after being restrained by West Midlands Police on September 7, 2003.He worked as a team leader in a local metal factory and was a father of three young children – described as “a family man with a huge smile” and “the last person you would have thought this could happen to”.His cousin, the famous poet Benjamin Zephaniah, has campaigned on the issue of deaths in police custody for many years.Benjamin says it is a harrowing feature in some cases – including Mikey’s – that a family member is the one to make the initial call to police.“It’s very sad, the background of the story, when you think about the fact it was his mother that called the police,” he says of Mikey’s death. “This actually happened quite a few times with people, especially when there’s a mental health issue.”Mikey’s mum had rung for help during a previous episode during which her son had gone onto a roof in the middle of the day and a police officer had gently talked him down.On the day he died, the 38-year-old was unwell and had smashed a window at his mother’s home in the Lozells area of Birmingham, prompting her to seek help again.“So his mother thought if she called police again he’d probably get the same police officer, but the difference is now it’s probably 11 o’clock at night and the police are in a completely different mode,” says Benjamin. “There’s no nice lady to come and talk to Mikey. They come in the mode they come when they get Black people in the middle of the night.”Mikey’s friend Michelle Kelly, 42, from Lozells, who has campaigned alongside the family for many years, describes the horrific events that followed.“So they just called code red,” she says. “They didn’t really have a grasp of what was happening. But once they got to the property, they didn’t really engage with the family to communicate and understand.”Instead of an ambulance being called, officers tried to subdue Mikey by hitting him with a police vehicle. He was restrained on the ground and hit with a police baton before being bundled into the back of a police van.“They used quite a significant amount of CS gas on Mikey,” says Michelle. “They reversed the police car that knocked him down. Reversed it so they could build up more traction before they hit him.”Michelle says it was heard at the inquest that her friend had weighed just 9st 2lbs. “You think of the slight man that he was – and the amount of officers that were pinning him down, his arms, his legs,” she says.In a damning narrative verdict six years later, the inquest jury found the way Mikey was restrained had resulted in his death.“He died of asphyxiation, probably by a foot on the neck, just like George Floyd,” says Benjamin. “The only difference is a foot rather than a knee. So the conclusion was that he was killed by police officers, but we don’t know which one, so nobody was charged.” The video of George Floyd’s death brought back painful memories.“I remember seeing that video and then immediately I thought of Mikey, because his last words were also, we think: ‘I can’t breathe,’” says the 63-year-old. “And do you know that he was also crying for his mum? And so immediately it all came back.”Today, Benjamin and his brother Tippa Naphtali are long-standing campaigners, with Tippa returning from London to Birmingham after his cousin’s death to take up the fight for justice and establishing the Mikey Powell fund in 2015.Tippa says he is determined Mikey’s life and death will be remembered and have a lasting legacy. He has worked with West Midlands Police to set up street triage teams so officers and medics who are trained in mental health support are dispatched to people in crisis.“Mikey’s death has shaped everything that I’ve done over the last 15 years,” says Tippa, 59. “And what we’ve achieved is amazing.For me that’s why I do it because I want to see these deaths stop, and I want to see the families who have lost loved ones looked after, it’s as simple as that.”But the family has suffered deeply over the years. Benjamin says Mikey’s mother, Clarissa Powell, has never recovered.“Auntie Clarice – god, she was cool, you know?” he says. “And then to see her now, she’s just a broken woman. She’s not the same person.”Like other families, Mikey’s relatives fought through official channels for years. In 2005, 10 officers were charged with misconduct or dangerous driving but cleared of wrongdoing the following year. No charges were ever brought in relation to Mikey’s death itself.In 2007, the IPCC decided not to pursue disciplinary charges against officers. Two years later, the inquest was heard. Then in 2018 West Midlands Police paid £300,000 compensation to the family.During the inquest, Mikey’s mother said she believed her son died as a result of racist behaviour by the police.Michelle says one disturbing statistic shows just how disproportionately some Black communities are affected by deaths in police custody. Three men from her home area of Lozells have died, including Mikey.“Three people in the space of a few hundred metres that are impacted,” she says. “You know, some people will go all their lives and not experience this or know anyone who’s been involved by this. They’re all people that locally we know. “It kind of makes you fill up. To think that you could be a colour and that colour could mean that you are at risk, to such an extent, of losing your life for no reason is scary. You know, it’s something we live with.”She also says there is a huge imbalance for the families trying to fight these cases who experience “multiple layers of injustice”.“In a lot of those cases, you can’t even get legal aid to fight your battle to get justice,” she says. “So it’s almost like a double whammy. Not only have you taken away our loved one – because of the racism and the way the system is, we can’t even fight for justice because we’re so poor.”She warns more robust training is vitally necessary for police forces across the country in how to deal with people suffering from mental health crises so they are not criminalised.“I think Mikey’s death first and foremost tells me it doesn’t matter who you are, it doesn’t matter what job you do – you can be unwell and you can end up dead because you need help and support,” she says.“He would have been the last person that I would have thought this could have happened to, because he wasn’t a violent man, he didn’t get into trouble with the police. “If it can happen to Mikey, it can happen to anyone. For me, that really opened my eyes to that. You just never in a million years would have expected him to have ended up dead.”Benjamin believes Mikey’s case should be reopened based on the evidence, but says he does not know how that will happen.Asked what the family is fighting for, he says: “I guess I’m hesitating because I’m trying to find a form of words that says something more than ‘we just want justice’. We want the same as it would be if it was the other way around.“You know, if there were four Black people surrounding one copper and a copper died, they would all be suspects, or they would be held under joint enterprise.“I think this is at the heart of the Black liberation struggle in Britain, and you could say the same for America and other places too – but we’re talking about Britain. “We don’t want anything special, we just want equal rights and justice. If you don’t get justice there’s no peace. We will keep coming out on the streets until we get it.”The death of Lloyd Butler Although the figures show there is a huge disparity in the number of Black deaths in police custody, the problem does not only affect Black men.Others who are potentially labelled by police as troublemakers or alcoholics, or who have mental health issues, are vulnerable too – as the death of Lloyd Butler shows.Lloyd’s death on August 4, 2010 is another case that begins with his own mother initially calling the police.“I just got a bit concerned that something was not right,” says Jan Butler, now 73, of Tile Cross in Birmingham. “Obviously, looking back on it, what I should have done is called an ambulance. I decided to call the police.”Jan had become concerned about Lloyd’s behaviour. The 39-year-old was acting oddly and refused to leave the family car, making punching movements at the windscreen.Although he had a history of alcoholism, Jan is adamant Lloyd – a father himself – was not drunk that day. She believes he may have suffered a reaction to a new medication he was taking to help treat the problem.A number of officers arrived. “He got inside the van,” says Jan, “and that was the last I saw of him.”Lloyd was taken to Stechford Police Station instead of hospital, where evidence heard at Lloyd’s inquest would show an alarming level of neglect.The jury watched CCTV footage of officers laughing, joking and swearing while they were supposed to be keeping constant checks on Lloyd.The hearing was also told officers made personal phone calls and visited web pages “where women were offering sex”, and one officer made improper entries into the custody record alleging they were checking on Lloyd more often than they actually were.More CCTV footage showed officers dragging Lloyd out of the police van by his legs.The inquest jury concluded that, had Lloyd been on a monitor in A&E at the time he had a heart attack rather than in a police cell, he would likely have survived. “The truth is that Lloyd was badly neglected and if they’d sent him straight to hospital, he would be alive today,” says Jan.“We had a specialist at the inquest, a doctor, and he said Lloyd was fit and healthy. He’d got no heart problems, he’d got no issues, he was 39 years of age. If he had been to hospital and maybe not gone to the police station, or gone to the police station and gone straight to hospital, he felt that he would have survived.”In a familiar pattern, the family has been through inquest proceedings, attempts to force the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to bring charges, and an IPCC investigation in their fight for justice and accountability.The IPCC said the way Lloyd had been treated “showed a disregard for human decency” and referred the case to the CPS.But the CPS decided the officers’ actions “did not meet the threshold for prosecution”.At a police misconduct hearing in 2013, the custody sergeant was found guilty of gross misconduct, and two others guilty of misconduct.It brought little comfort for Lloyd’s mother. “Lloyd’s my only child, so it was just driving me insane,” she says. “How can they get away with just not doing their job properly, that’s all. They couldn’t help him, and he must have been asking for help. They didn’t check him. They didn’t have anything happen to them. There was no justice.”Jan is haunted by the decision she made to call the police that day.“I look at myself for not phoning an ambulance, and that really upsets you,” she says. “You think: I know I didn’t kill him, but I could have saved him.“I could have saved him all that, and then we’d have gone down a completely different road. You walk around with that, knowing that everybody knows that. I’d always been there for Lloyd, to help him, save him, but that day I didn’t.”Jan has never been able to face watching the footage showing Lloyd in the police cell.“My niece, before I received a copy of it, went to view it with one of our solicitors, and she sat down and watched the lot,” she says. “And she said: ‘Auntie Jan, never, ever see it. Never, ever see it, because that tells the story when you see that.’ And so I have got it, locked away here. I’ve never watched it.”But as with other cases it would prove crucial in establishing in the chain of events that led to Lloyd’s death.For many years Jan went to protest marches and campaigned over deaths in police custody. Asked if she has been able to find any closure, she says: “That word never, never happens. It never happens because some days I’ve only got to smell a certain smell, or hear certain music or something takes me right back to Lloyd. “I think it’s almost like there is actually like a big knot that’s always there. It’s like something has gone, a part of your personality. A big chunk of it is gone. You’re not the person you were, but you don’t want to appear miserable, that miserable old lady that’s grieving for her son. So you still want to be the person you are – but it does, it robs your character.”But Lloyd has “two beautiful sons”, she says, who are now aged 30 and 23. “They’re two lovely well-grounded young men. So he left a mark and he was very proud.”Jan has also received a grant from the Mikey Powell fund, which she is using to spruce up the garden that was lovingly tended by Lloyd’s father, Ralph, until his death.“I’m determined this year, because Ralph always had it looking beautiful,” she says.“Ralph died three years ago in April and there’s two men in my life who are really important to me and they’re not here. But I know it’s part of life.“Ralph wouldn’t want me to be unhappy and Lloyd wouldn’t want me to be unhappy. And you really do have to try and convince yourself that they are in a better place now.”The bigger pictureThe statistics tell their own story.To date there have been 1,784 deaths in police custody or following contact with police in England and Wales since the charity INQUEST began recording data in 1990.Over the same time, there have only been 10 cases where murder or manslaughter charges have been brought against police officers. And in all cases, trials have collapsed or officers have been acquitted by the jury.Despite a major independent review three years ago, the annual number of deaths – 38 last year – is similar to what it was a decade ago.There are also damning statistics showing how people of different races are treated unequally – such as Home Office data showing that Black people are subject to 16% of all the use of force by police, despite comprising 3% of the population.INQUEST’s research estimates that the deaths of Black, Asian and minority ethnic people in custody are three times as likely to involve restraint as the deaths of white people in custody.Deborah Coles, director of INQUEST, said: “INQUEST has documented a long history of Black people disproportionately dying following use of force and neglect by police, particularly those experiencing mental ill health. “Inquests frequently uncover discriminatory treatment which is rooted in racial stereotypes of the violent and dangerous ‘big Black man’, rather than the relevant training or procedures.“There is an urgent need for structural and cultural change in policing, mental health and healthcare services. One which ends the reliance on police to respond to public health issues, and which confronts the reality of institutional racism in our public services.”Source: INQUEST" src="" />Humberside Police, West Midlands Police and South Yorkshire Police did not comment when contacted by HuffPost UK.A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said: “The death of Sean Rigg is a matter of regret for the Met along with the additional stress suffered by the Rigg family caused by the delay in bringing matters to a timely conclusion. “We have thoroughly reviewed what happened in this case to learn how we can expedite matters in future while maintaining a full, thorough and transparent process.”The National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC) said it could not comment on individual cases.But it pointed HuffPost UK to a press release from March this year announcing police leaders’ commitment to a plan of action to build a more inclusive police service, and “address negative disparities for Black people interacting with, or working in, policing”.The NPCC said a supporting programme will be run for at least two years to deliver the plan and it continues to consult on actions that will be included.NPCC chair Martin Hewitt said: “The legitimacy of UK policing is built on relationships between the police and the public, but levels of trust and confidence are significantly lower among some Black people and racial disparities exist that we cannot fully explain.“These disparities persist despite the strengths of British society, and the fact that policing is more inclusive, more diverse and more reflective of our communities than we have ever been.  “We are committed to a programme of change to make policing fairer, more inclusive, and, ultimately, more effective.”For more information on how you can support the National Mikey Powell Memorial Family Fund, please visit its official website or donate here. Readers can also donate to the Justice for the Family of Christopher Alder crowdfunding campaign or visit the United Families & Friends Campaign which supports those affected by deaths in custody.RelatedDeath In Police Custody: Victims' Families 'Appalled' As New Law Grants Officers AnonymityWake Up To How You're Treating Black Men, Top Custody Deaths Lawyer Urges PolicePolice Custody Deaths Reaches Highest Level For A DecadeOpinion: Britain's Record On Racism Is No Less Bloody Than America's
Dogecoin now has a total market value of $50 billion, making it worth more than Ford, Marriot, and Kimberly-Clark.
TechCrunch is embarking on a major new project to survey European founders and investors in cities outside the major European capitals. Over the next few weeks, we will ask entrepreneurs in these cities to talk about their ecosystems, in their own words. For this survey we are interested in startup hubs in England and Wales. […]
You’re reading The Waugh Zone, our daily politics briefing. Sign up now to get it by email in the evening. There were plenty of heartfelt and eloquent tributes to Prince Philip in the recalled parliament today. From Tory grandees such as Sir Bill Cash to the Green Party’s Caroline Lucas, the Duke of Edinburgh’s passing managed to unite politicians across the political divide. Even his infamous verdict that “we have 650 [MPs] and most of them are a complete bloody waste of time” didn’t deter the outpouring of goodwill.It was perhaps fitting that it fell to Boris Johnson to lead the speeches, given his own fondness for leavening his public duties with the odd risque gag or ten. As the prime minister listed all the qualities he most admired in the late Duke – a passion for the environment, a boyish fascination with science and technology, even a hint of rakishness  –  it was clear he felt the loss of a kindred spirit. When the PM said “he contrived to be at once politically incorrect and also ahead of his time”, the implicit parallel was unmistakeable.While Johnson hasn’t exactly followed Philip’s lead in putting his wife’s needs and career before his own, his speech underlined that public service can come in many different forms. And just a couple of hours beforehand, the rapid rate at which such service can be tarnished by politicians was all too evident when the PM ordered a review of David Cameron’s Greensill lobbying of government.It remains to be seen just how much more detail the Boardman review will unearth, but Cameron has done a pretty good job of trashing his own reputation so far. The grubby spectacle of a former prime minister repeatedly texting and phoning serving ministers on behalf of a firm of financiers will be hard to live down. Cameron’s own admission that he should have used “the most formal of channels” failed to grasp that an ex-PM really shouldn’t be lobbying anyone in government for profit.Testing to breaking point the maxim that what often matters in Britain is not just what you know but who you know, the former premier seemed to rely on his personal pulling power in pressing the interests of Greensill on Matt Hancock, Jesse Norman, John Glen and Rishi Sunak. For the chancellor in particular, as the man in charge of the nation’s finances, the political risks of this whole row are more than obvious.Sunak’s text message to Cameron on April 23 last year – in which he said “I have pushed the team” [of Treasury civil servants to find a possible Greensill solution]  – has been pounced on by his critics. Even though the Treasury points out that Cameron’s lobbying failed because Greensill was not given a penny in government-backed loans through the Covid corporate financing facility (CCFF), it’s that phrase “pushed” that smacks of favours.Allies of Sunak can see how it all looks but strongly deny any impropriety. I’m told the p-word stems from the chancellor being proud of the fact that he “pushes” civil servants, challenging them to interrogate policies and their own assumptions. Officials were already exploring alternative models to see if Greensill could help more small businesses, and the text to Cameron was a polite courtesy rather than a trigger for action, insiders say.Last spring, Sunak was indeed pushing civil servants, with policies like the unprecedented furlough scheme having to be processed through ministerial direction or even legal direction in the face of officials’ understandable nervousness about the sheer cost and scale of the plans. Any change to the Covid financing structure would have needed his approval, and in the end he rejected it.I’m told Sunak did not treat Cameron like an “old mate” precisely because they were not old mates. The pair had met just once when the new Richmond MP was elected in 2015. Although Cameron is reported to have said during the Brexit referendum ”if we’ve lost Rishi, we’ve lost the future of the party”, the two had no personal connection.Sunak’s other defence is that he last week proactively, voluntarily released his only two texts to Cameron. I understand that for at least a fortnight there was no clear guidance from the Cabinet Office, from Freedom of Information officials, from government lawyers, on whether the chancellor could or should publish his texts. In the end, believing he had “nothing to hide”, he went ahead. In doing so, he may well have created a transparency precedent.Which brings us back to Cameron, whose own texts the government felt it had no duty to publish. Bombarding a chancellor with texts, phone calls and emails for profit may be demeaning enough. But it’s the murkiness of his lobbying operation that makes Cameron’s own famous commitment to transparency curdle like sour milk.Cameron made a big play in opposition and government of his phrase “sunlight is the best disinfectant”. In a delicious irony, the phrase was first coined as a metaphor by former US Supreme Court justice Louis Brandeis, in a 1914 collection of anti-trust articles titled: “Other People’s Money: And How the Bankers Use It”.Sunak isn’t out of the woods yet. Although Labour’s urgent question on Tuesday on Greensill business interruption loans may technically fall within the remit of the business department, the chancellor could be proactive once more by turning up to the Commons to make his case. In James Graham’s political play Privacy, Sunak’s Richmond constituency predecessor William Hague had a memorable catchphrase: “nothing to hide, nothing to fear”.Given Boris Johnson’s own chaotic approach to the ministerial code (keeping Priti Patel in post, failing to replace Alex Allen as independent adviser), Sunak could emerge with credit if he can prove not just no impropriety on his part but also a commitment to open government. Notwithstanding the new Boardman “review” of the Greensill affair, just imagine if the Treasury select committee opted to investigate and hear testimony in public from each of the players?As for Cameron, how long ago it seems since he jibed Tony Blair “he was the future once”. It was Prince Philip, the reformer who pushed for the televising of the coronation, who did his bit to “let daylight in upon magic”. Brand new laws and rules on lobbying, either under PM Johnson or PM Sunak, could perform a similar public service for our politicians.Related...Boris Johnson Orders Probe Into David Cameron Lobbying RowTexts Confirm David Cameron Lobbied Rishi Sunak To Help Save Greensill CapitalLabour Urges Ministers To Tighten Rules On Lobbyists After Cameron Controversy
An update to England and Wales’ contact-tracing app has been blocked by Apple and Google for violating their location data collection rules. When gyms, pub gardens, and non-essential shops reopened today, the COVID-19 app was supposed to have a new feature that would log every place that a user checked into. If they later tested positive, the app would inform other people who’d been to that venue. But this collection of location data is prohibited by Apple and Google, who developed the decentralized API model on which the app is based.  The update has therefore been blocked from Google Play…This story continues at The Next WebOr just read more coverage about: Apple
NHS app update blocked over data privacy concerns.
An online gambler who won the jackpot on a blackjack app was told by the firm it wouldn't pay as the win was the result of a software error. So he went to court.
The government is looking to provide cheap Covid-19 testing in an effort to safely resume foreign holidays.However, ministers have refused to confirm whether routine overseas travel will be permitted from May 17 as they fear of jeopardising falling cases and the success of the vaccine roll-out by importing infectious variants.The Department for Transport said it was “too early” to say when vacations abroad would resume as it confirmed that a traffic light system will be used to categorise countries based on risk.The destinations people can visit without self-isolating on their return is also still unconfirmed. Announcing the findings of the Global Travel Taskforce, transport secretary Grant Shapps said the government will work with the travel industry and private testing providers to reduce the cost of foreign trips – which could lead to free pre-departure tests and cheaper tests when holidaymakers return.The Department for Transport said: “We will also work with the travel industry and private testing providers ahead of international travel reopening to see how we can further reduce the cost of travel for the British public while ensuring travel is as safe as possible.“This could include cheaper tests being used when holidaymakers return home, as well as whether the government would be able to provide pre-departure tests.”It added: “It is too early to predict which countries will be on which list over the summer, and the government continues to consider a range of factors to inform the restrictions placed on them.“We will set out by early May which countries will fall into which category, as well as confirming whether international travel can resume from 17 May.”Under the traffic light system, assessments will be based on a range of factors, including the proportion of a country’s population which has been vaccinated, rates of infection, emerging new variants and the country’s access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing.These are the rules for each category:– Green: There is no need to self-isolate. Take a pre-departure test and a PCR test on day two of your arrival in the UK.– Amber: Self-isolate for 10 days, unless you receive a negative result from a test taken at least five days after arrival. Take a pre-departure test, and PCR tests on day two and day eight of your arrival in the UK.– Red: Spend 11 days in a quarantine hotel. Take a pre-departure test, and PCR tests on day two and day eight of your arrival in the UK.The categorisation of countries will be “kept under review” with a “particular focus on variants of concern”, the Department for Transport said.Restrictions will be “formally reviewed” on June 28 to take account of “the domestic and international health picture and to see whether current measures could be rolled back”, the department added.Further reviews will take place no later than July 31 and October 1.A “Green Watchlist” will be introduced to identify countries most at risk of moving from “green” to “amber”.Deaths involving coronavirus have plummeted 92% since the peak of the second wave in January, official weekly figures for England and Wales showed in the latest sign of progress against the pandemic.Some 712 deaths involving Covid-19 happened in the seven days to March 19, according to the Office for National Statistics, down from 8,945 deaths in the week ending January 22 and the lowest level of weekly occurrences since October 9.Meanwhile, the latest Public Health England data showed Covid-19 case rates have dropped across all regions.Government data up to April 7 shows that of the 37,899,029 jabs given in the UK so far, 31,807,124 were first doses – a rise of 99,530 on the previous day.Some 6,091,905 were second doses, an increase of 408,396.Related...PM To Detail 'Traffic Light' System For Overseas Holidays And TravelToo Soon To Book Foreign Summer Holidays, UK Government SaysBoris Johnson To Set Out Plan For Controversial ‘Covid Status Certification’ Scheme