Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Report from vigil for Ian Tomlinson

The vigil for Ian Tomlinson in the City of London last night brought together friends and family of Ian as well as some of us who have campaigned for justice to be served.

Julia Tomlinson, Ian’s wife, said at the vigil, “All we want is a proper investigation… We will not give up until we get it.”

The following weeks will especially difficult for the family as they cope with their first Christmas without Ian.

Alongside family members, those who gathered heard from John McDonnell MP and Vivian Figueiredo, Jean Charles de Menezes' cousin.

The road to finding justice still has far to go. The family are currently awaiting the CPS decision on how they will respond to the IPCC dossier into Ian’s death.

The United Campaign against Police Violence will support the Tomlinson family however we can in the tough months ahead, and they should know that ourselves and the organisations represented in our campaign are with them.

The protest was covered widely on the evening news, click here for reports from BBC News and the Evening Standard.

Pictures and video from the vigil will follow shortly - watch this space. Check out the Ian Tomlinson Family Campaign website and the Harpymarx blog for more information.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Vigil for Ian Tomlinson - Tuesday 1 December

Candlelight vigil to remember Ian Tomlinson
Royal Exchange by Threadneedle Street, London, EC3V 3LL
Tuesday 1st December
6pm - 7.15pm

The United Campaign against Police Violence would like to encourage all our supporters to come along to this vigil for Ian Tomlinson on Tuesday. It has been called by the Ian Tomlinson Family Campaign.

It is important that we keep Ian’s memory alive and continue the fight for justice, I hope as many people can come as possible.

Speakers include:
Ian’s family
Samantha Rigg David - Sean Rigg Justice & Change Campaign
Deborah Coles - INQUEST
John McDonnell MP

The Ian Tomlinson Family Campaign said:

"Ian died in tragic circumstances, an 'innocent passerby' trying to get home, after a police assault at the G20 protests on April 1st 2009.Eight months on, our family are preparing for our first Christmas without him and still waiting for justice.

"We have been grateful for public support this year and would like an opportunity to hold this public memorial gathering to remember Ian, with our friends and supporters around us.We ask that those who attend please wear black as a mark of respect and remember that this is peaceful event.

"PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU ARE COMING so we can estimate numbers and please send messages of support - a number of these will be read out at the vigil.

"RSVP to"

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Notting Hill Carnival policing (continued)

Anyone who was at Carnival this year would have seen another great event, with around a million people celebrating together.

The police were out in force, as anticipated, and spent much of the day walking in single file through the crowds, dividing groups of people street partying, setting up a series of what looked suspiciously like checkpoints, and stopping young black men as they came out of Tube stations.

According to the "Notting Hill Carnival News" section of the Metropolitan Police website there were eventually 139 arrests on Bank Holiday Monday. The report also talks of mass arrests at Victoria station (quoted below).

More details as we get them. UCAPV has also put in a Freedom of Information request to the Met Police querying the number of people searched, their ethnic background, how many of these were arrested and how many charged. This should take a few weeks but the results will be posted here when we have them.

The following is from the Met Police website, "Notting Hill Carnival News":
19:20hrs - 40 arrests at Victoria station

A total of 40 people have now been arrested at Victoria mainline station. They were arrested in order to prevent a breach of the peace at the Notting Hill Carnival.

At 1510hrs today, police contained an initial group of 25 people who we believe had travelled by train from south London. They were stopped based on intelligence to suggest that the group was going to the Carnival to commit disorder.

Of that 25 people, two were arrested straight away after police recovered body armour and a knife. The remaining 23 were arrested on a case-by-case basis.

As the group were being dealt with at Victoria, more people arrived at the station associated with the initial group. These 15 people were also arrested to prevent a breach of the peace on a case-by-case basis.

All 38 people will be taken by bus to a south London police station. They will be held until police are satisfied that there is no longer a risk they will commit disorder at Carnival.

The other two arrested are in custody.

22:40hrs - Those detained at Victoria released

The thirty-eight people arrested at Victoria mainline station to prevent a breach of the peace were released at 22:00hrs.

Those arrested were taken to a south London police station. The time they remained in custody was kept under constant review
until the opportunity for them to commit a breach of the peace had passed.
Where we identified juveniles we arranged collection by a guardian or responsible adult.

Sunday, 30 August 2009

Notting Hill Carnival is not a policing operation

For most of us, Notting Hill Carnival represents the best of London life. It is a celebration of diversity, multiculturalism and culture attracting 1.5 million people from all around the world.

While the majority of us come to Carnival to enjoy taking part in Europe’s largest street party, the Metropolitan Police see Carnival is something to be controlled, curtailed and harassed.

This year’s Carnival will see 11,000 police officers on patrol. They will be enforcing a curfew from 6.30pm and ensuring that sound levels don’t pass the “agreed” 135 decibels. If the policing operation is anything like that of 2008, it will also see hundreds of mainly black youths being stopped, contained and searched indiscriminately as they make their way to the celebrations.

Most sinister of all, directing the policing operation will be Commander Bob Broadhurst. He was in charge of policing during April’s protests against the G20 in the City of London, which saw hundreds harassed, beaten and arrested by the police. This was also when we saw the death of Ian Tomlinson, who was struck by a police baton and died minutes later, despite the fact he was not even a protester but was simply making his way home. The fact that Commander Broadhurst is now directing this operation is a scandal.

This year we have already seen raids of “known troublemakers” prior to Carnival, and 150 letters hand-delivered by police to others commanding them not to attend. Can you imagine if this happened in the run up to London’s New Year’s Eve celebrations or the London Marathon?

The police seem to have a very different approach when the event involves the Afro-Caribbean community. While Carnival is a celebration of people coming together, it seems the police are more than willing to stoke racist divisions.

We believe that the Notting Hill Carnival should be a celebration – not a heavy-handed police operation.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Climate Camp: Has the climate changed for policing of protests?

As the government drags its feet over the vital task of saving the planet from environmental destruction, those who see the need for a radically different approach to fighting climate change have once more been forced to take direct action at the Camp for Climate Action.

But anyone who has been at the previous Climate Camps knows that while the criminal actions of multinationals go unchallenged by the state, those who fight against them are criminalised.

The recent publication of police log entries from the G20 protests against environmental and financial crimes have exposed the level of police brutality meted out. “I punched him in the jaw and he moved backwards,” wrote one officer, while another hit protesters with “shield strikes both flat and angled” and “open palm strikes…and fist strikes as well”.

A recent Christian Aid survey suggests that around half of the UK population believe the police have been too aggressive in the policing of environmental protests. In light of these revelations, we now see a police force tactically confused, dodging a constant barrage of criticism.


Preparations for Climate Camp have reflected this. Much has been made of their new “softly, softly” approach, which suggests less use of force, increased communication with organisers, and, of course, their use of Twitter.

While the G20 protests were the tipping point for public opinion, it has built up over time, from the kettling and harassment of those on Stop the War protests over George W Bush’s visit to London last year and the invasion of Gaza to the Kingsnorth power station protests.

The staggering increase of stop and search – 322 percent for black people and 277 percent for Asians – since 2007 adds to this contempt. The issue of deaths in custody refuses to go away either, thanks to the continued fight for justice by the families of people like Sean Rigg, who died at Brixton police station one year ago, and Ian Tomlinson.

But the “community policing” of protests such as Climate Camp will not last unless this pressure is kept up on the police.
This tactic is an exercise in damage limitation, not a change of heart, and whether the police hit you with batons or not, they are still there to limit resistance at events such as this, by whatever means necessary.

We must ensure that the pressure is kept on until we are ensured the fundamental right to protest, to live without harassment, and win justice for those brutalised by the baton-wielding strong arm of the state.


We should also recognise that the “softly, softly” approach seems selective. The man behind the operation in the City of London on that fateful day the G20 came to town, Commander Bob Broadhurst, is to direct the 11,000 police shifts at this year's Notting Hill Carnival.

If the policing operation at Carnival is anything like that of 2008, it will also see hundreds of mainly black youths being stopped, contained and searched indiscriminately as they make their way to the celebration of diversity and culture.

The United Campaign Against Police Violence (UCAPV) was formed in the wake of the G20 violence to ensure the right to peaceful protest, the protection of civil liberties, and to stop deaths at the hands of police – whether on protests, in police stations, during “terror raids” or anywhere else. UCAPV is an alliance of protest groups, trade unions, family justice campaigns, political parties and many others. Working together we can hold the police to account and push for reforms of British policing.

Community Policing? Tuesday's Stop the War Protest

A few videos from the Stop the War protest against Israeli PM Netanyahu's visit to Gordon Brown.

Is this the new "community policing" we can expect?

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Christian Aid Survey: Half of UK adults displeased with policing of environmental protests

A new poll by Christian Aid confirms what many of us suspected - that the tide of public opinion has swung against the police after their violent responses to legitimate protests over the past year.

Read the full article on the Guardian website.

Friday, 21 August 2009

As further evidence of police cover-ups comes out, remember Sean Rigg tonight in Brixton

The Guardian has published the latest astonishing piece of evidence today into the death of Sean Rigg at Brixton Police Station, one year ago today.

It makes public a recording of Suzanne Wallace, a chief inspector who was in charge of the station, saying CCTV was working at the station and that recordings had been seized, including in the metal cage outside the station where Sean was imprisoned. This contradicts earlier claims by the Independent Police Complaints Commission, which said that only CCTV footage from inside the station was seized.

Join us to remember Sean from 5.30pm tonight, at the junction of Fairmount Road and Brixton Hill. Then on to rally at Brixton Police Station.

No more lies. No justice, no peace.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Sean Rigg memorial procession

The 21 August procession in Brixton to remember Sean Rigg's death in police custody will be an important event to call on the police, the IPCC and the CPS to start taking this case, and the other cases of deaths in custody, seriosuly.

UCAPV is calling on everyone who can to help build this event. You can download the latest leaflet here.

Please get in touch if you can help leaflet tube stations, rail stations, shopping centres, high streets, work places, public meetings etc.

No justice, no peace!

Thursday, 6 August 2009

Ian Tomlinson's family speak out

New video interview at the Guardian:

Remember Sean Rigg

This is a message from Samantha Rigg-David, from the Sean Rigg Justice and Change Campaign:

Its nearly 1 year since Sean died, the time has gone so fast it is unbelievable - It has been a tough year to say the least and we continue to fight and campaign for answers.

The memorial will mark one year and will end our weekly Thursday vigils outside Brixton police station - we will continue to campaign there as long as necessary at landmark times only.

The family would like to thank everyone for their continued support and encouragement - without some of you we would never have made it this far, thank you again.

I enclose a memorial flyer with details for you to pass to all your contacts. If anyone can print some and hand them out that would be great, we should have some print outs available at our usual vigil tonight 7.30pm.

There could be some very poignant media coverage of the 21st - There is high interest.

In Peace And Solidarity
Samantha Rigg-David

IPCC recommends changes to policing

The Independent Police Complaints Commission demanded immediate changes to policing following its investigation into the G20 protests in London.

This was the result of some 134 complaints to the IPCC regarding policing at the protests in the City of London on 1 April. Much footage has since emerged of police brutality on the day, including the death of innocent bystander Ian Tomlinson.

We need to ensure that we continue to push for policing reforms - not only the limited reforms recommended by the IPCC, but the full right to protest without harassment, and justice for those who have died in police custody.

Tomlinson Family Say “CPS Must Leave It To A Jury” After IPCC Refer Evidence To CPS

Message from Ian Tomlinson's widow, Julia Tomlinson, on the Ian Tomlinson Family Campaign website.

“It has been a very difficult four months since Ian died and it is a relief to see some progress. The last information that the coroner put out was Dr Cary’s view that Ian died from internal bleeding. Video footage made it clear to us, and everyone else, that Ian was the victim of an unprovoked assault by a police officer. If there is going to be any justice then it must be left for a jury to decide if the police officer is guilty of killing Ian. I hope the CPS will get the case in front of a jury as soon as possible. We would like to thank everyone who came forward as witnesses”.

Any enquiries to be sent to iantomlinsonfamilycampaign [at] gmail dot com. More info about the campaign can be found at:

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Who killed Ian Tomlinson?

United Campaign Against Police Violence urges Crown Prosecution Service to prosecute officer involved.

The United Campaign Against Police Violence (UCAPV) welcomes the step forward in the investigation into the death of newspaper vendor Ian Tomlinson. As the Independent Police Complaints Commission passes its files on the investigation into the police officer seen to strike Ian Tomlinson to the Crown Prosecution Service, we hope that this case will finally come to court and that justice is done.

If the officer is charged and found guilty of Ian's death it would be the first time an officer has ever been charged with manslaughter.

Millions have now seen the footage obtained by citizen journalists of Ian Tomlinson being struck from behind by the police officer. We can only assume that the 1,200 hours of footage obtained by the IPCC from CCTV cameras in the area will give a far more detailed account of the event.
UCAPV has been part of the movement calling for justice for Ian Tomlinson, and also for the many others who have died in police custody. We recognise the efforts of the thousands who have campaigned over the death of Ian Tomlinson, and we will campaign further to ensure that there will be a thorough and fair criminal investigation into Ian's death, but also the deaths of others who have died in police custody – numbering over 1,000 since 1969, but as yet without any verdicts of murder or manslaughter against any police officer.

As we await the trial date for the officer in question, UCAPV is playing a key role in organising a memorial event for Sean Rigg, who died at Brixton Police Station in August 2008. This will take place on 21 August, more details to follow.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009



Workers staging a sit-in at the soon-to-close Vestas wind turbine plant on the Isle of Wight are being starved out by police.

The police, many inside the factory and dressed in riot gear, have denied food to the workers who took over the factory offices last night, to protest the closure of their factory. The police, operating with highly questionable legal authority, have surrounded the offices, preventing supporters from joining the sit-in, and preventing food from being brought to the protestors.

Around 20 workers at the Vestas Plant in Newport, on the Isle of Wight, occupied the top floor of offices in their factory to protest against its closure which will result in over 500 job losses.

Acting without an injunction, on private property, the police have repeatedly tried to break into the office where the protesting workers have barricaded themselves, and have threatened the workers with arrest for aggravated trespass, despite the fact that no damage has been done to the property where the protest is taking place. Police have also forcibly removed people from private property, another action that is of very questionable legality in the absence of a formal injunction.

The office involved in the latter action was number 3606. The officer who appears to be in charge is 3115.

This heavy handed response is the latest in a long line of over-reactions to protest by various UK police forces.

The Vestas workers inside the factory released a statement earlier today:

“As workers at a wind turbine manufacturer, we were confident that as the recession took hold that green or renewable energy would be the area where many jobs could be created – not lost.

So we were horrified to find out that our jobs were moving abroad and that more than 525 jobs from the Isle of Wight and Southampton were going to be added to the already poor state of island unemployment.

This has sent, and will continue to send, shockwaves of uncertainty through countless families on the island – many of which are being forced to relocate away from the island.

We find this hard to stomach as the government are getting away with claiming they are investing heavily in these types of industry.

Only last week they said they would create 400,000 green jobs. How can the process start with 600 of us losing our jobs?

Now I’m not sure about you but we think it’s about time that if the government can spend billions bailing out the banks – and even nationalise them – then surely they can do the same at Vestas.

The people of Vestas matter, and the people of the island matter, but equally importantly the people of this planet matter. We will not be brushed under the carpet by a government which is claiming to help us.

We have occupied our factory and call on the government to step in and nationalise it. We and many others believe it is essential that we continue to keep our factory open for our families and livelihoods, but also for the future of the planet.

We call on Ed Miliband as the relevant minister to come to the island and tell us to our face why it makes sense for the government to launch a campaign to expand green energy at the same moment at the country’s only major wind turbine producer closes.

Please show your support.

Protest at Newport Vestas at 5pm today (off Dondor Lane - Monks Brook Newport, Isle Of Wight, PO30 5WZ)

Demonstrate Friday 24th of July Friday 5.30pm St. Thomas square Newport”

Contact details:
(ed) 07775763750
(martin) 07950978083


525 redundancies in the UK were announced by Vestas at the start of April.

Two factories (that make wind turbines) on the Isle of Wight (in Newport and Cowes) are due to close at the end of this month.

Vestas (a Danish company) profits grew 70% in 2008, revenue went up 58% while shipping volumes went up 28%.

There are currently 20-30 workers occupying the offices of the factory in Newport. There are about 50 workers forming a picket line outside.

For more information, and updates, visit

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Retaking our liberties

download the flyer
A benefit for the United Campaign Against Police Violence.

Thursday 16 July from 7.30pm
The Cross Kings, 126 York Way, London N1

Featuring: Woodstock legend Barry 'The Fish' Melton, Sameh Moussa, Angry Sam, Graham Larkbey & The Escape Committee, Reddog Visuals.

£5 (+ donation) on the door.

Organised by irb productions.

Monday, 29 June 2009

10 July - Put the "Independent" Police Complaints Commission on trial!

On Friday July 10th it will be 100 days since the death of Ian Tomlinson. To mark this sad occasion, and to show solidarity with the Tomlinson family and the countless other families and friends still awaiting justice the United Campaign Against Police Violence asks you to join us in putting the Independent Police Complaints Commission on trial.

WHERE: IPCC HQ, 90 High Holborn, London, WC1V 6BH
WHEN: Friday July 10th, 4-6pm
WHY: Currently those who police the police have shown themselves to be neither independent nor just. We are going to hold our own public investigation and trial of the IPCC and invite all those with complaints to bring them down to be aired (and judged) in public. We also come to stand in solidarity with all victims of police brutality, their families and their friends.

View Larger Map

Thursday, 25 June 2009


This from a press release from Inquest:

Today the Metropolitan Police Authority and the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police conceded to the family’s request that the full report by former Commander John Cass into the death of Blair Peach in Southall in 1979 should be disclosed, subject to any legally necessary redactions. This momentous decision followed an ongoing campaign that was given added momentum following the death of Ian Tomlinson during the G20 protests and the similarities between the two fatal indicents. Prior to the MPA meeting today, INQUEST met MPA member Jenny Jones, Blair’s former partner Celia Stubbs and his brother Philip Peach to discuss the motion requestingdisclosure.

Deborah Coles, Co-Director of INQUEST, said:

We welcome the lifting of the veil of secrecy surrounding this death that has undermined family and public confidence in the Metropolitan Police Service. The challenge now is to ensure that there is as full disclosure as legally possible and that reasons are given for any redactions given ongoing public concern about this process.

It was the negative experience of Blair Peach's family and friends with the investigation and inquest system that led them to join with others to set up INQUEST in 1981. Sadly, the need for the organisation remains as urgent today. Non-disclosure of evidence has been one of the most problematic issues following deaths in custody and has seriously undermined family and public confidence in the police complaints system. The whole basis on which the Cass report has been withheld from the Peach family for 30 years has been discredited and it is accepted by government that the results of investigations into deaths following police contact are now disclosed to families.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

More police brutality

Nottingham police have been busy in recent weeks.

First we read about the case of Reece Staples, 19, who was arrested on suspicion of causing criminal damage.

Reese, a former Nottingham Forest midfielder, was taken to Oxclose Lane Police Station. At 5am the police called an ambulance, finding him to be unwell - he was pronounced dead when he arrived at the hospital.

This story is all too common, and is similar to the story of Sean Rigg, who also died in highly suspicious circumstances having been taken to a police station in South London.

Today reports come out of the police Tasering and allegedly beating an apparently unarmed man in Nottingham.

Both incidents have been reported to the IPCC - which has a 100% record of protecting the police involved in such cases of brutality.

This is why UCAPV is organising protests at the IPCC offices around the country on 10 July. More details will follow, but get in touch with the campaign if you can help us build it.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

The day we kettled New Scotland Yard

Thanks to everyone who turned out on Saturday for the brilliant demonstration against police violence. It was an angry, united protest, and we managed to (pretty much) entirely surround New Scotland Yard!

It was interesting to note the police attitude to the demo. Other than some half-hearted attempts to clear the road outside the Yard at the end, there was little police intimidation.

Have a look at some of the videos of the day below on our YouTube playlist.

Yesterday the campaign had another boost - the lecturers' UCU union is the latest to affiliate nationally!

Our next action will be a protest outside the office of the IPCC on 10 July. More information to follow...

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Saturday: Get ready to march and kettle!

Don't forget! 3pm, Trafalgar Square, this Saturday!
Just a few days to go now before we march from Trafalgar Square to New Sctoland Yard to kettle the police... Please note the map of the route on this site.

We have been picking up more support this week, with Sussex and Essex Students' Unions affiliating. Today we also have the great news that the public service PCS union has become the first national trade union to affiliate!

Today London's Green Party MEP, Jean Lambert, said this is a press release to publicise the protest:

"It was horrifying to witness the heavy-handed tactics employed by police on the streets of London during the G20 summits in April, and deeply disturbing to learn of the death of Ian Tomlinson, an innocent man. This Saturday we will remember Ian Tomlinson, Jean Charles de Menezes, who was killed four years ago, Brian Douglas who died in 1995, Blair Peach, who was killed 30 years ago, and all those people – more than 1,000 – who have died in police custody since 1969.

“Of course we recognise that the police face an increasingly difficult task in keeping our streets safe, but there must be no trade-off with our civil liberties.

“The police should be helping to rid our streets of violence – not adding to it. The breadth of support for the UCAPV shows that people from all backgrounds are no longer prepared to see civil liberties undermined and threatened by the very force which exists to protect us. We must ensure that public trust in the police is rebuilt, and that respect for human rights becomes a fundamental principle of modern policing.”

Friday, 15 May 2009

Saturday 23 May - Stop Police Violence, Kettle New Scotland Yard!

Saturday 23 May - assemble 3pm Trafalgar Square
March via Downing Street to New Scotland Yard.

The United Campaign Against Police Violence has called a national demonstration to highlight the issues of police violence and demand justice for those who have died in police custody.

The police tactic of "kettling" demonstrators - essentially detaining protestors and bystanders without charge - will be turned on its head on the protest, when we kettle New Scotland Yard.

At the end of the protest there will be a naming of the dead for those who have died in police custody, led by the families of the bereaved who have yet to receive justice. Over 1000 people have died in police custody in the last 40 years - yet no one has been found responsible.

Protestors will demand the disbanding of the Territorial Support Group, the resignation of "Independent" Police Complaints Commission chair Nick Hardwick, justice for those killed in police custody and for the right to protest.

John McDonnell MP, chair of Labour Representation Committee, said:
"Increasingly, evidence demonstrates policing of major demonstrations has got out of control and specialist police units have been acting with virtual impunity.

"This campaign is about achieving democratic control over policing and securing protection from state violence and harassment for members of our communities."

Mark Serwotka, General Secretary, Public and Commercial Services union, said:
"The right to protest is a fundamental right which in these times is more important than ever. That's why everyone should support this campaign to ensure people can protest without the threat of brutality."

The Sean Rigg Justice and Change Campaign, said:
"We believe in standing up for our moral and human rights and for speaking for our loved ones who can no longer speak for themselves - Christopher Alder, Brian Douglas, Roger Sylvester, Azelle Rodney, Mikey Powell, Ricky Bishop to name a few... They are among thousands who have received no justice for their death and their blood is crying out from beneath the grave - these lost lives must not be forgotten, their cases need to be re-opened and re-examined, like that of David Oluwale, so that true justice can prevail.

"For Sean Rigg, Paps Ullah, Ian Tomlinson and many others we expect independent investigations that are robust, fully competent and unbiased towards the police in their search for the unequivocal truth - the IPCC are not fit for that purpose . Overall we demand full accountability of police officers who kill due to violence or negligence - why should they have impunity from prosecution? No Justice, No Peace!"

Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the Greater London Assembly and Metropolitan Police Authority, said:
"This is a demo with a difference - we are going to show the Met that we are tired of the illegal imprisonment that they call 'containment' and that we want them to change their attitude to protesters and become law abiding themselves.

"Change is hard, but the Met is losing public confidence and it's time they understood that their job is to reduce violence, not add to it."

Chris Nineham, Stop the War Coalition, said:
"What happened at the G20 was part of a trend. In recent months the police have attacked many of our protests. They have raided the homes of people who came on our demonstrations in solidarity with Gaza. They are trying to prosecute others who protested against George Bush's visit in 2008. This is a very important demonstration because the attempt to criminalise protest and intimidate protestors must be stopped."

Saturday, 9 May 2009



6pm, Tuesday 12 May 2009

The Karibu Centrel, 7 Gresham Road, London SW9

“The meeting will be an opportunity for Lambeth residents to raise any issues of concern with IPPC (sic) Chair Nick Hardwick.” - So says the Community Police Consultative Group for Lambeth (CPCG) website.

The United Campaign Against Police Violence is calling for those angered with the way the IPCC is squarely on the side of the police to come along, build the 23 May demo against police violence outside the event and put some questions to Nick Hardwick that he won't want to hear!

Friday, 8 May 2009

A great start! ...Now on to the demo!

All roads lead to 23rd May…

Stop Police Violence! Launch meeting report

We had a fantastic official start to our campaign this week. Around 150 people gathered for the launch meeting of United Campaign Against Police Violence in London on Tuesday. The rally heard from Green Party member of the London Assembly, Jenny Jones, Anna Fairclough from Liberty, Sam Rigg-David from Sean Rigg Justice and Change Campaign, Deborah Coles of Inquest, Andrew Burgin from Stop the War, Martin Smith from the SWP and Andy from Legal Defence & Monitoring Group. We were also privileged to hear from family members of both Roger Sylvester and Habib 'Paps' Ullah - both of whom died in the custody of police. A video of the meeting will be forthcoming on the website.

It was announced at the meeting that our forthcoming demonstration on Saturday 23 May will march from Trafalgar Square to New Scotland Yard, via Downing Street. We aim to "kettle" New Scotland Yard - let's give the police a taste of their own medicine!

The campaign is now well and truly on the road, so now we need to go all out to build the demonstration. You can download a poster for the event here. Click here to print off fliers.

We also decided that Thursdays would be devoted to building the demonstration - leafleting local tube stations and railway stations at rush hour. There is a huge amount of anger in society at the moment - over the death of innocent bystander Ian Tomlinson at the G20 protests, the huge number of people hurt and arrested following the Gaza demonstrations earlier in the year, the continual attacks on civil liberties and the attacks on the right to protest. We need to tap this anger and unite together in protest!

Gaza demonstration arrests

The Metropolitan Police today sent out a press release saying that six more people have been arrested over the Gaza protests in December/January. This takes the total number of arrests to 93. The press release states that this relates to "a series of demonstrations in central London descended into violence, with attacks on police officers and a number of shop windows being smashed".

What the police "forget" to mention is the sheer scale of repression on those wanting to take to the streets peacefully over the attacks on Gaza by Israel. For example, those marching to the Israeli Embassy were "kettled" (in effect, detained without trial) in the Hyde Park underpass, having been directed there by police. There followed a series of baton-charges and panic which, amazingly, did not lead to any serious injuries or deaths. Other reports indicate general levels of verbal and physical abuse by police officers, the penning in of groups of protestors for prolonged periods, and intimidation of press photographers. If the police wanted a violent confrontation they certainly went out of their way to ensure it.

The United Campaign Against Police Violence wants all those who experienced these actions by the police to join us in demonstrating for the right to peaceful protest on 23 May - and we would also like to hear from anyone who has been arrested for daring to take to the streets for something they believe in.

Thursday, 30 April 2009

UCAPV rally - Tuesday

Launch rally of United Campaign Against Police Violence
This Tuesday (5 May) - 7pm - Friends Meeting House (opposite Euston

Get leaflet/poster for rally here. Get leaflet/poster for demo here.

Today we held a protest/lobby outside City Hall for the first meeting of the Metropolitan Police Authority and managed to get it into ITN, BBC, Sky and Al Jazeera news bulletins as well as some of the papers.

What we need now is a large launch event which will put us on the map and encourage people to build the campaign in their areas. We have speakers including Bob Crow and also speakers from the Green Party, Liberty, Inquest, Stop the War. This is in the build-up to a national demo against police violence on Saturday 23 May in central London.

Please find attached leaflets/posters for both rally and demo. It is important to get them publicised!


Monday, 27 April 2009

Latest news...


Please forward this around to everyone you know! Make sure you are on our mailing list (via!


1: Join the lobby of the MPA meeting this Thursday morning!
Called by UCAPV
Assemble 9:00am, Thursday 30 April
Outside City Hall (

Calling all organisations, trade unionists and activists! We will be gathering outside City Hall from 9:00am on Thursday morning to lobby the meeting of the Metropolitan Police Authority - their first meeting since the events of the G20 demonstrations. Come and join the protest against the Met's violent policing of the demonstrations and their extensive use of batons, dogs and "kettling".

In particular, come and make your voice heard against the Met's Territorial Support Group (TSG) which supposedly specialises in public order. Ian Tomlinson collapsed and died after being hit and pushed by a TSG officer who has since been questioned on suspicion of manslughter. If we're going to get justice and defend our right to protest we need to keep the pressure up on the Met.

Please bring trade union banners, and forward this information far and wide. A press release will be out soon - please also forward this to all relevant contacts.

Also, please see below a message from Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the London Assembly, who will be at the protest.


2: Fantastic response at Millwall on Saturday with Bob Crow!

On Saturday members and supporters of the UCAPV, including Bob Crow, General Secretary of the RMT, went to The Den, homeground of Millwall FC, to give out leaflets about the campaign and forthcoming events.

Ian Tomlinson was a big Millwall fan, as is Bob Crow, and the support for the campaign was immense. We got rid of well over 1,000 leaflets within half an hour, with many Millwall fans coming back for more. The press were in attendance too with Bob being interviewed for both Channel 4 News and The Times. In fact, the only people who weren't happy to see us were a few shifty Met officer pacing around the ground.

Thanks to everyone who came along to help on Saturday. More information including hopefully a picture or two will be on the website soon.


3: Stop Police Violence!!!
Public meeting, 7:00pm, Tuesday 5 May
Friends Meeting House, Euston Road (opposite Euston station)

Speakers include:
· Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the London Assembly
· Bob Crow, RMT General Secretary
· Anna Fairclough, Liberty
· Sam Rigg-David, Sean Rigg Justice and Change Campaign, UCAPV
· Andrew Murray, Stop the War Coalition Chair
· Brenda Weinberg, United Friends and Family Campaign
· Martin Smith, SWP National Secretary
· Other speakers to confirm…
This rally is both the public launch of the UCAPV and a chance to pull hundreds of people together to go through the important political issues and questions that face us, and to build and strengthen our resistance. It will also be a vital launch pad for our national demonstration.

A new leaflet will be available soon.


4: National demonstration against police violence
3pm, Saturday 23 May
· Remember Ian Tomlinson - no more deaths in police custody
· Freedom to protest - defend civil liberties
Assemble 3:00pm in Trafalgar Square, central London. March to New Scotland Yard via Downing Street.

This is our chance to put thousands on the streets of the capital, against police violence and in defence of our civil liberties and right to demonstrate. We will march past Downing Street, right up to the headquarters of the Metropolitan police. We know that we can't rely on the "Independent" Police Complaints Commission or hand-picked government bodies... mass mobilisation will be the key to our success.

Leaflets and posters will be available soon. Activists in London need to begin spreading the word, using the publicity, and using the model motion to get trade and student union backing. Activists outside London need to start thinking about booking transport to get down to London - ideally fundraising or getting union backing to fund coaches. If you are trying to get down to the demo from outside London please get in touch. We aim to post a list of coaches coming down soon. Watch this space!
5: Have you contacted the IPCC?

If you have lodged a complaint with the IPCC about your treatment at the G20 protests, please let us know. The solicitors dealing with the investigation into the death of Ian Tomlinson would like to gather as much information on this as possible. Email us at


6: Affiliations and supporters

In just a week of existence the campaign has attracted a lot of support. Trade union branches have started affiliating to the campaign, including London Underground Engineering branch of the RMT, Jubilee South & East London Line RMT, George Green's School NUT. We expect more to come, so please find the model motion on our website! Greater Manchester Stop the War Coalition and London Green Party are now also official supporters. Spread the word!

7: Message from Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the London Assembly

Jenny Jones, Green representative on the MPA will be addressing the lobby prior to the MPA meeting this Thursday and would like to update all those concerned about the policing of the G20 protests on April 1st and those who have written to her. A call to write to members of the MPA then follows. Please use this opportunity to impress upon all members of the MPA the importance of our campaign ahead of the meeting and as they convene it.

JENNY JONES: "I'm writing to bring you up to date with the actions which I am taking to ensure that the police are both brought to account for their past actions and more professional in handling future protests.

"I've written two letters to the Commissioner outlining key questions about the G20 protests. I've also written to the London Mayor making practical suggestions about changing public order policing in the short term.

"Along with Dee Doocey, I have put forward the following motion [below] to the next public meeting of the Metropolitan Police Authority, 10am on 30th April at City Hall. This motion falls short of the full public inquiry which some of you have called for, and falls short of my own aims, but I'm keen for the MPA to pass something which takes the debate forward and developing that consensus is going to be quite challenging.

"Don’t forget that I am only one member of the MPA and there are lots of other members who would love to hear your views. The London Mayor chairs the MPA, then there are 11 elected politicians, who are members of the London Assembly and 11 independent members whose appointment is approved by the London mayor.
Contact details below are taken from the MPA website:

"Thanks again for taking the time and trouble to write in. Let's hope for an end to repressive policing here in London."

Jenny Jones
Members Services
Metropolitan Police Authority

MOTION TO MPA: “This Authority recognises that the job of policing the G20 demonstrations on 1st April was difficult but believes that the strategy and tactics adopted by the Metropolitan Police were fundamentally wrong. This Authority notes that the Commissioner has asked HMIC to review public order policing, and that the IPCC are investigating a number of specific complaints. In order to begin the process of restoring public confidence the HMIC review must take evidence in a public forum from all concerned, including protesters, and closely examine other recent protests to consider the growing concern that police tactics have become more aggressive in recent years. The HMIC review should make recommendations that would form the basis of long-term policies on the policing of protest in recognition of the following principles:

1. Demonstrations and other peaceful forms of protest are a fundamental democratic right, which all public bodies are under a duty to facilitate and protect.
2. Policing of demonstrations must always be proportionate, and must discriminate between the need to facilitate peaceful protest and prevent criminal acts committed by a minority.
3. The police must use aggressive tactics such as kettling’, baton charges, and attacks with dogs only when they are absolutely necessary and proportionate. The seizure of personal property from demonstrators is not acceptable. The use of aggressive or intimidatory tactics against peaceful protesters is provocative, inappropriate, and counter-productive, since it increases the tension and likelihood of violence.
4. Any officers not clearly identifying themselves by wearing an identification number are committing a disciplinary offence.
5. The police must exercise due care and attention when making statements to the media since predictions of violence can be self-fulfilling. The police must never exaggerate the likelihood of violence, nor should they dissemble the facts after a demonstration has occurred.
6. The police must consider Britain’s reputation abroad and not commit acts that set a poor example and thus undermine our country’s efforts to promote human rights.
If these principles are not fully incorporated into the HMIC review and any recommendations that arise from it, then this Authority will re-examine what further steps need to be taken, including the possibility of instigating a further review.”


Please write to and include the Member's name in the subject header. See if member links not live below.

Boris Johnson Mayor of London (London Assembly)
Vice Chairman
Kit Malthouse Deputy Mayor for Policing and Conservative Member of London Assembly
London Assembly members
Jennette Arnold – Labour constituency Assembly Member for Waltham Forest, Hackney and Islington
Victoria Borwick - Conservative Londonwide Assembly Member
James Cleverly - Conservative constituency Assembly Member for Bexley and Bromley
Dee Doocey - Liberal Democrat Londonwide Assembly Member
John Biggs – Labour constituency Assembly Member for Barking and Dagenham, City of London, Newham, Tower Hamlets
Jenny Jones – Green Party Londonwide Assembly Member
Joanne McCartney – Labour constituency Assembly Member for Enfield and Haringey
Stephen O'Connell – Conservative constituency Assembly Member for Croydon and Sutton
Caroline Pidgeon - Liberal Democrat Londonwide Assembly Member
Richard Tracey – Conservative constituency Assembly Member for Merton and Wandsworth
Independent members
Reshard Auladin
Faith Boardman
Christopher Boothman
Valerie Brasse
Cindy Butts
Toby Harris
Kirsten Hearn
Neil Johnson
Clive Lawton
Deborah Regal
Graham Speed

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Model Motion: Affiliate to UCAPV

It is less than a week since the United Campaign Against Police Violence (UCAPV) was launched to remember Ian Tomlinson, to stop deaths in police custody, to call for the right to demonstrate and stop the erosion of civil liberties.

We have already received affiliations from Greater Manchester Stop the War Coalition, RMT London Underground Engineering Group and George Green’s School NUT, Isle of Dogs.

Others are in the process of supporting us. Supporters are also due to put emergency motions for affiliation to UCAPV to the conferences of the PCS, FBU, BECTU and UCU trade union conferences.

United Campaign Against Police Violence – model motion

  • Notes:
    The tragic death of Ian Tomlinson on 1 April after he was hit and pushed to the floor by police involved in containing demonstrators protesting against the G20.
  • That there have been numerous complaints, many with video evidence, against police brutality and violence on the demonstrations around the G20, including those relating to the tactic of “kettling” (detaining demonstrators for hours on end without access to food, water, toilet facilities, etc.).
  • Restrictions on demonstrations and those participating in them have increased recently, with high-profile cases such as the much criticised policing of protests at the Kingsnorth power station, and the pre-emptive detention of 114 people planning to attend climate demonstrations in Nottinghamshire.
  • Sadly, the death of Ian Tomlinson is not an isolated case. Many families who have lost loved ones in police custody are still campaigning for justice after many years, including the families of Sean Rigg, Brian Douglas, Harry Stanley, Roger Sylvester and Christopher Alder.
  • The formation of the United Campaign Against Police Violence (UCAPV), set up following Ian’s death and the events of 1-2 April around the slogans “Remember Ian Tomlinson – no more deaths in police custody” and “Freedom to protest – defend civil liberties”.
  • Believes:
    Evidence suggests that aggressive police behaviour is not the result of individual officers, but is an institutional issue.
  • There is a need for a broad-based active campaigning strategy around all these questions. The Independent Police Complaints Commission and its predecessor the Police Complaints Authority, have never secured a single conviction of a police officer involved in many of the cases of deaths in police custody over the years.
  • Resolves:
    To support the UCAPV and future actions it is involved with.
    To add our name to those backing the national demonstration against police violence called on Saturday 23 May (assembling 3:00pm at Trafalgar Square, marching to New Scotland Yard). To mobilise for and encourage members to attend the demonstration.
  • To affiliate to the UCAPV at a cost of £100 / make a donation of …………..

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Lights Out and upcoming events

20.30 – 21.30, Friday 24 April

To remember Ian Tomlinson and those who have died in police custody, the United Campaign Against Police Violence (UCAPV) has called for lights across Britain to turn off for one hour this Friday.

Businesses, homes, universities, and other institutions are asked to pay their respects through an hour of darkness and contemplation.

This is the first activity in a rolling programme of action called by the newly formed United Campaign Against Police Violence, set up following the outcry over G20 policing and the death of 47-year-old newspaper vendor, Ian Tomlinson.

The action is supported by, amongst others, ex-Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, John McDonnell MP, Green Party assembly member, Darren Johnson, and Samantha Rigg-David, whose brother, Sean Rigg, died in police custody in August 2008.

Darren Johnson AM said: “The images of police violence against innocent people were absolutely sickening. I fully support the Lights Out action – London needs to stick together on this.”

Ken Livingstone said: “Those who talk up the threat of violence have to ask themselves whether they played a role in creating the circumstances that led to Ian Tomlinson’s death.”

John McDonnell MP said: “Ian Tomlinson's death was a tragedy. We need to know the truth about why and how it happened and we need to ensure that lessons are learned so that no other demonstrator suffers harm or dies on our streets. I fully endorse the call for Earth Hour to be repeated in memory of Ian Tomlinson.”

Samantha Rigg-David said: “Families have been fighting for years for their loved ones to be remembered, for their deaths in police custody not to be swept under the carpet and for justice. We support the Lights Out action on 24th April 2009 as it will be a small symbol of how it continuously feels for us, to live without them.”

The Den, Saturday 25th April
Assemble: Zampa Road, SE16, 14.20

Bob Crow, general secretary of the RMT union and Millwall fan, will distribute leaflets for the United Campaign Against Police Violence, at the Millwall – Leyton Orient game at The Den. He will be joined by Barry, a friend of Ian Tomlinson and fellow Evening Standard seller. They invite campaigners and the media to the event.

Bob Crow said: “This is just the beginning of the campaign against police violence – Ian Tomlinson will not be forgotten.”

Barry said: “I knew Ian for 26 years and he loved Millwall. I’ll be among campaigners to make sure Ian is never forgotten”

Further details will follow.

Further campaign activities include:
Thursday, 30 April:
Lobby of the Metropolitan Police Authority meeting on G20 policing, City Hall. With Jenny Jones, Green Party Assembly Member.
May Day protests, details to be released.
Tuesday, 5 May. Launch rally at Friends House, London.
Saturday, 23 May. Mass demonstration through London.
(More details on these events will follow.)

Saturday, 18 April 2009

A campaign is born

This website is under construction. In the mean time, contact the campaign at