Nazi Labour criminalises Gypsies

Ecovillage Network UK evnuk at
Sun Jul 7 15:24:12 BST 2002

[We all live in a fascist regime, a fascist regime, a fascist regime :-(  T]

Police given new powers to evict Gypsies from sites

Patrick Wintour, chief political correspondent

Saturday July 6, 2002

The government yesterday responded to a storm of often media - led pressure 
by announcing that the police are to be given new powers to evict Gypsies 
and travellers if they refuse to move on to local authority designated sites.

Ministers also said they would not require every local council to set up 
official sites for travellers.

At present the police can only evict if there is evidence of abusive 
behaviour, criminal damage or the presence of six or more vehicles on the 
site. The powers do not apply if the encampment is on land forming part of 
the highway.

In a compromise the government has decided the eviction powers will only 
apply where local authorites have made provision for temporary, transit and 
emergency stopping sites for travellers who regularly pass through their area.

Ministers hope their proposals will ease the cultural clashes between 
travellers and the community but Andrew Ryder, the secretary of the Labour 
campaign for travellers rights, said the measures did not go far enough to 
help travellers.

"It is essential there is a good system of sites available, or else 
eviction leads to travellers being pushed on from one site to another. Many 
of the problems are caused by social exclusion from services, and the 
refusal of councils to give planning permission for Gypsies to live on 
their own land," he said.

The government announced that some money in an existing £17m Gypsy site 
fund is likely to be rechanneled so councils open up new sites.

Mr Ryder also pointed out that Labour had condemned the decision of the 
Conservative government eight years ago to remove the obligation on 
councils to provide sites as reckless and spiteful.

In January, the official government count found that 2,774 caravans - or 
20% of all British Gypsy caravans - were on unauthorised encampments. The 
survey showed 326 more families were on unauthorised sites than in January 
2001, without guaranteed access to water, toilets and schooling.

The package, jointly announced by the Home Office and the office of the 
deputy prime minister yesterday, is designed to meet the continuing 
complaints that travellers ruin the local landscape, leave litter and 
behave anti-socially.

The plan - vague in parts - appears to have been rushed out ahead of a 
private members bill to be debated next week and sponsored by the 
Conservative MP for Bournemouth East, David Atkinson. The Tory-led bill is 
likely to be more generous to travellers than government policy, but would 
also underline ministerial failure to come up with its own response.

The government acknowledged that disputes between councils and police over 
responsibility often leave communities angry at the failure of anyone to 
intervene. Many Tory MPs have claimed the police probably have adequate 
powers to remove trespassers, but do not use them.

Even Labour MPs, such as Bill Rammell, MP for Harlow, have called for 
travellers, rather than council tax payers to be made liable for damage 
caused during an illegal occupation. Guidance on managing unauthorised 
camping, including the proper disposal of waste, will be published in the 

The guidance will emphasise the "same standards of behaviour and regard for 
the law are expected from all sectors of the community, including regard 
for public health and waste".

Gypsies claim the problem of the lack of sites is compounded by their 
inadequate quality. Many of 325 local authority Gypsy sites in England are 
often near rubbish dumps, sewage works or noisy industrial facilities. It 
has been claimed they epitomise the definition of a ghetto.

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