Do not allow a UK wide rollout of Tasers to all police officers

Do not allow a UK wide rollout of Tasers to all police officers

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Jay Berry-Heath started this petition to Priti Patel (Home Secretary) and

In England and Wales, there are currently around 17,000 Taser-trained police out of 123,000 officers, I have been extremely alarmed by the recent calls, from a public petition and John Apter the Chairman of the Police Federation, for funding to be allocated for a United Kingdom wide rollout of Tasers and training for every officer. I hope to bring to your attention my beliefs and research for why a UK wide rollout of Tasers should not happen.

I would like to bring to your attention a BBC article on this topic (linked below) in which it is stated that, “A study by Cambridge University found that police officers visibly armed with Tasers used force 48% more often and were more likely to be assaulted than those on unarmed shifts.” Which effectively negates the whole supposed purpose of the rollout. 

An increased use of force is the primary issue with the rollout of tasers, “An experiment with City of London police found that, while rarely deployed, just the presence of Tasers leads to greater overall hostility in interactions between the police and public.”. We can look to the United States as an example of a country which has liberally adopted the widespread use of Tasers; Reuters has documented a total of at least 1,081 U.S. deaths following use of Tasers since 2001. It is clear that Tasers are not being used as a tool of self-defence but instead as a weapon of lethal force. The context of police brutality (excessive force) in the US echoes that of the UK in that it is clear healing and community is required to bridge deep rooted divides, not lethal weapons.

This potential UK wide rollout of Tasers exposes a corrosion in democracy and is a clear perversion of justice and the rule of law. By allocating the funds for the rollout the Conservative government is once again using money as a `Band-Aid` for much deeper issues, it is time the government and police force work to protect the most disadvantaged rather than sweep them under the rug - with lethal force.

Thank you so much for reading! If you want I find out more please check out these links below. 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/amp/uk-49405999

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-taser-deaths-insight/as-death-toll-keeps-rising-u-s-communities-start-rethinking-taser-use-idUSKCN1PT0YT

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/aug/16/timeline-of-taser-controversies-in-the-uk

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