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Police Warned Over Press Links

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Police Warned Over Press Links

Post  NoStone on Wed 4 Jan - 16:09

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-16411329

The "close relationship" between parts of Scotland Yard and the media has caused "serious harm", a report says.

The report by Dame Elizabeth Filkin says information had previously been given "inappropriately".

This had "compromised" the way police and the media scrutinised each other's activities, it added.

Dame Elizabeth also said drinking alcohol with journalists should be an "uncommon event" for police because "drinking loosens tongues".

The former parliamentary commissioner for standards calls for a new approach based on "more extensive, open and impartial" provision of information to the public.

Officers will also be urged to keep a note of any conversation they have with journalists.

Dame Elizabeth also advises police to "watch out" for reporters "flirting" which she said is designed to get officers to drop their defences. [or their trousers/drawers!!??]

"Mixing the media with alcohol is not banned but should be an uncommon event," her report said, adding that drinking with officers "may be seen as inappropriate hospitality".

Dame Elizabeth Filkin was named last year as head of an inquiry to advise on cleaning up the relationship between the Metropolitan Police and the media following the hacking scandal

Born on 24 November 1940 and educated at Birmingham University
She is a former community worker, having worked in the London Borough of Brent back in the 1970s. She went on to to be an academic, as well as Chief Executive of the Citizens Advice Bureau
She was Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, where she challenged vested interests at Westminster until being "hounded out" by MPs in 2002

Supporters describe her as "fair but firm... someone who cannot be bribed, bought or bullied"

She said there were "some very serious issues" relating to contact between journalists and police which had "eroded trust from the public".

The report, which has now been published online, tells officers to "watch out" for "late-night carousing, long sessions, yet another bottle of wine at lunch - these are all long-standing media tactics to get you to spill the beans. Avoid." [oh - that old trick]

The inquiry was ordered by police and Home Secretary Theresa May after a phone hacking scandal uncovered evidence suggesting improper ties between officers and the media. Dame Elizabeth was asked to investigate following allegations that reporters paid officers for information.

And the previous Met Police Commissioner, Sir Paul Stephenson, quit the Met in July amid the phone-hacking scandal surrounding the News of the World.

He was criticised for his links to former News of the World deputy editor Neil Wallis, who was arrested in July 2011 on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications. Mr Wallis had also been working as a public relations consultant for Champneys spa when Sir Paul recuperated there, although the Met said Sir Paul had been unaware of this.

A subsequent inquiry cleared Sir Paul of all wrongdoing.

In the report, Dame Elizabeth added: "I recommend greater openness in providing information to the public, much of which will be through the media.

"The two new roles which I suggest - public information and integrity champions - will drive the change, making media contact permissible but not unconditional. Unequivocal and sustained leadership must be given."

“Meetings will no longer be enhanced by hospitality and alcohol ”

And among other key recommendations were that "confidential briefings should be the exception" and "all contact should be available for audit". [by whom?? FOI requests???? or will there be a public register for everyone to see - something called 'transparancy??]

Behaviour guide

Dame Elizabeth also highlighted criticism of senior officers, saying the Met "has not communicated effectively enough with Londoners".

She added: "I am concerned by the extent to which police officers and staff feel that some of their senior leaders abide by a different set of rules.

"There has been wide variation in how the senior team interpreted policy on dealing with the media and receiving gifts and hospitality.

"There has been no clear standard set by the senior team for police officers and staff to use as a guide for their own behaviour and in some instances the standards set have been poor and have led to consequent damage."

Speaking at the launch of the report, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe said new rules for officers and their relationship with journalists will be implemented.

"There should be no more secret conversations. There should be no more improper contact and by that what I mean is between the police and the media - that which is of a selfish, rather than a public interest."

"Meetings will no longer be enhanced by hospitality and alcohol. It doesn't mean to say there will never be an occasion when we take hospitality with journalists, but on the whole, we wouldn't expect to see it" [is that code for - if you do it - dont getting found out!!??

- and what about other people that work in the public sector and interact with the police?? - like politicians???? are they ok to be wined and dined and drop their drawers??? - not to mention politicians interactions with the press!!??


Last edited by NoStone on Wed 4 Jan - 16:34; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Embolden)

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Re: Police Warned Over Press Links

Post  Angelique on Wed 4 Jan - 16:47

NoStone

Many thanks for this article - even though I keep hearing the words: Job Justification lol!

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Re: Police Warned Over Press Links

Post  NoStone on Wed 4 Jan - 16:48

Angelique wrote:NoStone

Many thanks for this article - even though I keep hearing the words: Job Justification lol!

Angelique

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Re: Police Warned Over Press Links

Post  tanszi on Wed 4 Jan - 17:02

silly me i thought this was an article about Police links as in Leicester Police links to the McCs fund site.;

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Re: Police Warned Over Press Links

Post  Guest on Thu 5 Jan - 14:22

tanszi wrote:silly me i thought this was an article about Police links as in Leicester Police links to the McCs fund site.;
That's what I first thought too Tanszi, I thought it's a shame that the Police weren't warned about dodgy internet links as well as dodgy press ones :(

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Re: Police Warned Over Press Links

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