Labour are wittering about their latest "pledge card" which will detail the promises they're most likely to break if they ever get a sniff at power again. It's the usual airy-fairy meaningless stuff that no one will ever be able to prove one way or another. But one aspect caught my eye -
In an attempt to empower victims of antisocial behaviour, the prime minister says they will be entitled to take out civil injunctions, funded by the local public authority, if the police are not taking action within a set time.
"People have got to know if they have a real complaint they will get a fast response, and ultimately if they feel they have not been given satisfaction, they will be able to take a civil injunction themselves and that will be paid for by the authority."
Right, so let me see if I've got that right. Some local neds pan your window in and you report it to the police. They come round, investigate it, compile a report for the CPS or the Procurator Fiscal who evaluate it and decide if a conviction is likely etc etc. But, if you get bored of waiting, you can launch a civil case paid for by council tax payers. Or if the police point out that you never saw who broke your window and they can't arrest the ned across the road just because "he looks well shifty innit" you can launch your own prosecution.
Lovely. Expect the courts to be stuffed full of "He said, but she said and I said" cases in no time. Which will result in greater backlogs of cases, more people getting fed up and launching civil cases. All paid for by Council Tax Payers.
Then there's this little gem -
Labour is also planning to install champions for victims of antisocial behaviour in every local authority.What? Is that like Block Wardens then? Is this a fancy pc term for the old babushkas who kept an eye on tenement blocks in Soviet Russia, reporting anti-party behaviour to the State?
Tell you what, here's a better idea Gordon. Use the police we have. Let them do their jobs of patrolling the streets and deterring by their presence, instead of being used as personal bodyguards by politicians terrified of their own constituents and keeping a permanent thin blue line around Westminster.
Jury Team are calling for the public to be given a referendum on introducing army-style punishments for offenders. I daresay that will have far more of an effect on anti social behaviour than Gordon's intention to bankrupt councils and logjam the courts.