Police (Northern Ireland) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 8:15 pm on 8th November 2000.

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Photo of Lord Laird Lord Laird Crossbench 8:15 pm, 8th November 2000

My Lords, nothing in Clause 19 should require a district commander to answer questions or disclose information that would compromise his general duty as an officer. When one reads the general duties of a police officer in Clause 32, one sees they involve protecting life and property, preserving order and preventing crime.

We cannot at this point be certain that all DPPs will have the desired goal of facilitating community consultation and reducing crime within the district in partnership with the police services. Therefore Amendment No. 26 provides protection to sensitive information of which the district commander may have knowledge and protects against DPPs or members of DPPs who wish to use their position for destructive rather than constructive purposes. I beg to move.