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Latest news from the Network for Police Monitoring (Netpol) - July 2016 update

Dissent is not a crime

News from Netpol: July 2016



Netpol secures new funds to monitor anti-fracking protest policing

As opponents to fracking prepare for a more intense phase in campaigning against new testing and extraction sites around the country, we are delighted that the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust Ltd has granted Netpol additional funding until 2018 to change the way the police continue to respond to anti-fracking protests.

You can find out more about our new campaign plans here.




Whistleblowing site 'Netpoleaks' goes live

Netpol has created a whistle-blowing website called Netpoleaks, which allows anyone who prefers to stay anonymous or who requires a certain level of security to submit ‘sensitive’ information in a secure way.

Based on Tor, which is considered the best technology for digital anonymity available to Internet users, you can only access the site using the Tor Browser, which is easy to download and install from our website. We also have a small supply of USB drives with the Tor Browser software pre-installed, which are available from Netpol at events over the coming year.

We are particularly interested in receiving information about police surveillance on political campaigners and activists and are also working with the Undercover Research Group to help them gather more evidence of the undercover targeting of activists by 'domestic extremism' units.

To find out more, see Blowing the Whistle on Oppressive Policing and Surveillance on our website and see this article on Vice's Motherboard site.
 


New guide on resisting Prevent

As part of our support for Together Against Prevent, the campaign tactic adopted by a growing number of organisations, Netpol has put together a new guide for campaigners on how to start resisting the government’s Prevent strategy at a local level.

You can find the guide on our website here.
 



Can you spare £3 a month to support us?

We know there so many fantastic organisations seeking funds, but when we say Netpol runs on a shoestring, we really mean it. Can you spare just £3 a month to help support our campaigning activities?

You can find out how at netpol.org/about/donations - we really appreciate any help you can offer. 
 

Other News

Horse Hill anti-fracking trials offer no clear position on legality of 'slow-walking' protest tactics -  at the end of June, nine anti-fracking campaigners were acquitted of obstruction of the highway at a trial at Redhill in Surrey. A further nine were in court in July, with eight found guilty of a range of offences (more details here). The acquittals reflect Surrey Police’s failure to show its operation at Horse Hill was proportionate, but provide little clarity for campaigners on the likelihood of arrest if they adopt the same tactics in the future. Read our analysis here.

Panic in the parks of London - in late July, the media reported “mobs of youths” turning Hyde Park in London into a “warzone”. Read an alternative view by Netpol member London Campaign against Police and State Violence (LCAPSV) here.
 
Rights Watch UK launch 'Preventing' Education' report – this excellent new report looks at the impact of the government's "counter-radicalisation" Prevent strategy on children and young people in schools. You can read the full report at rwuk.org/prevent-report/ and a video of its highlights is available here.
 
Home Office refuses Scottish government's demand to extend the Pitchford inquiry into undercover policing – even though a majority of known spycops worked in Scotland, the inquiry will remain limited to events in England and Wales. Find out more here.

Annual statistics released for deaths during or following police contact in England and Wales 2015/16 – more than half had mental health concerns. Campaigners from INQUEST question whether a ccell is a suitable place for vulnerable people and why they are more likely to be restrained by the police and to die in police custody. Find out more here.

ABOUT NETPOL

The Network for Police Monitoring (Netpol) seeks to monitor public order, protest and street policing that is excessive, discriminatory or threatens civil rights. We are a network of activists, campaigners, lawyers and researchers sharing knowledge, experience and expertise to effectively challenge policing tactics and strategies that are damaging to the freedoms of all sections of our society.
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