Safer Neighbourhoods Newsletter about pavement cycling

Alexander Baxevanis made this Freedom of Information request to Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

The request was successful.

From: Alexander Baxevanis

18 January 2010

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

This enquiry is related to the February 2010 Newsletter of the
Swiss Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team. The following
paragraph is quoted verbatim from this newsletter:

--- beginning of newsletter quotation ---

Cycling on the pavement

Cycling on the pavement is a problem in a number of wards in Camden
and although not so many people are cycling due to the very cold
weather, the Team continue to issue Fixed Penalty Tickets where
appropriate. During a very lively session on the subject at the
last Public Meeting, several suggestions were put forward to help
deal with this problem. For instance: – why don’t cyclists have to
take proficiency tests like motorists do? Should cyclists have
identifying plates on their cycles? Should there be a cycling code
similar to the Highway Code, and why not make cyclists pay for a
licence? So many people have been frightened or injured by pavement
cyclists that all these measures could be considered, especially
since the major, Boris Johnson hopes to extend a cycle-club scheme
in London.

--- end of newsletter quotation ---

1) With respect to the claim that "So many people have been
frightened or injured by pavement cyclists" please send me any
information held by the Swiss Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team
(or any other part of the Metropolitan police) that substantiates
this claim.

2) With respect to the suggestion that "all these measures could be
considered", is it an official policy of the Metropolitan Police
that any of the measures listed above (such as number plates &
licensing for cyclists) should be proposed to the government?

3) Can you please send me any official minutes or other notes from
the Public Meeting mentioned in the above newsletter that show what
was discussed during the "very lively session" on the subject of
cycling on the pavement? In particular, is there any record of (a)
how many people attended the meeting, (b) how many attendees
complained about cycling on the pavement and (c) whether police
officers attempted to address any of the concerns raised (e.g. by
explaining that the Highway Code does apply to cyclists).

4) Can you please send me any Metropolitan Police editorial
policies around the publishing and content of Safer Neighbourhood
Teams' newsletters? More specifically, I would like to know (a) who
is generally responsible for authoring these newsletters, (b) if
anyone senior to the author(s) is reviewing these newsletters prior
to them being published and distributed and (c) if there are any
rules which govern what can or can't be written in these
newsletters.

Do let me know if you'd like me to clarify any of the above
questions or if you'd like a full copy of the newsletter I'm
referring to.

Yours faithfully,

Alexander Baxevanis

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

18 January 2010

Dear Mr. Baxevanis

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2010010002696
I write in connection with your request for information which was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 18/01/2010. I note you seek
access to the following information:

* "This enquiry is related to the February 2010 Newsletter of the Swiss
Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team. The following paragraph is
quoted verbatim from this newsletter: --- beginning of
newsletter quotation --- Cycling on the pavement
* Cycling on the pavement is a problem in a number of wards in Camden
and although not so many people are cycling due to the very cold
weather, the Team continue to issue Fixed Penalty Tickets where
appropriate. During a very lively session on the subject at the last
Public Meeting, several suggestions were put forward to help deal with
this problem. For instance: – why don’t cyclists have to take
proficiency tests like motorists do? Should cyclists have identifying
plates on their cycles? Should there be a cycling code similar to the
Highway Code, and why not make cyclists pay for a licence? So many
people have been frightened or injured by pavement cyclists that all
these measures could be considered, especially since the major, Boris
Johnson hopes to extend a cycle-club scheme in London.
* --- end of newsletter quotation ---
* 1) With respect to the claim that "So many people have been frightened
or injured by pavement cyclists" please send me any information held
by the Swiss Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team (or any other part
of the Metropolitan police) that substantiates this claim.
* 2) With respect to the suggestion that "all these measures could be
considered", is it an official policy of the Metropolitan Police that
any of the measures listed above (such as number plates & licensing
for cyclists) should be proposed to the government?
* 3) Can you please send me any official minutes or other notes from the
Public Meeting mentioned in the above newsletter that show what was
discussed during the "very lively session" on the subject of cycling
on the pavement? In particular, is there any record of (a) how many
people attended the meeting, (b) how many attendees complained about
cycling on the pavement and (c) whether police officers attempted to
address any of the concerns raised (e.g. by explaining that the
Highway Code does apply to cyclists).
* 4) Can you please send me any Metropolitan Police editorial policies
around the publishing and content of Safer Neighbourhood Teams'
newsletters? More specifically, I would like to know (a) who is
generally responsible for authoring these newsletters, (b) if anyone
senior to the author(s) is reviewing these newsletters prior to them
being published and distributed and (c) if there are any rules which
govern what can or can't be written in these newsletters. Do let me
know if you'd like me to clarify any of the above questions or if
you'd like a full copy of the newsletter I'm referring to. "

Your request will now be considered in accordance with the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (the Act). You will receive a response within
the statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Act,
subject to the information not being exempt or containing a reference
to a third party. In some circumstances the MPS may be unable to
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Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet, which details your
right of complaint.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please
contact me at the above e-mail address, quoting the reference number
above.

Yours sincerely

R. Loizou
Administrative Support Officer
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Phone: 01625 545 700

show quoted sections

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

1 February 2010


Attachment GUIDANCE ON CONTENT to be sent.doc.pdf
294K Download View as HTML

Attachment MINUTES SWISS COTTAGE to be sent.doc.pdf
211K Download View as HTML

Attachment Newsletter Checklist to be sent.doc.pdf
74K Download View as HTML


Dear Mr Baxevanis

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2010010002696

I write in connection with your request for information dated 18/01/2010
which was received by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 18/01/2010.
I note you seek access to the following information:

This enquiry is related to the February 2010 Newsletter of the Swiss
Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team. The following paragraph is quoted
verbatim from this newsletter:

--- beginning of newsletter quotation ---

Cycling on the pavement
Cycling on the pavement is a problem in a number of wards in Camden and
although not so many people are cycling due to the very cold weather, the
Team continue to issue Fixed Penalty Tickets where appropriate. During a
very lively session on the subject at the last Public Meeting, several
suggestions were put forward to help deal with this problem. For instance:
- why don't cyclists have to take proficiency tests like motorists do?
Should cyclists have identifying plates on their cycles? Should there be a
cycling code similar to the Highway Code, and why not make cyclists pay
for a licence? So many people have been frightened or injured by pavement
cyclists that all these measures could be considered, especially since the
major, Boris Johnson hopes to extend a cycle-club scheme in London.

--- end of newsletter quotation ---

1) With respect to the claim that "So many people have been
frightened or injured by pavement cyclists" please send me any information
held by the Swiss Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team (or any other part
of the Metropolitan police) that substantiates this claim.

2) With respect to the suggestion that "all these measures could be
considered", is it an official policy of the Metropolitan Police that any
of the measures listed above (such as number plates & licensing for
cyclists) should be proposed to the government?

3) Can you please send me any official minutes or other notes from
the Public Meeting mentioned in the above newsletter that show what was
discussed during the "very lively session" on the subject of cycling on
the pavement? In particular, is there any record of (a) how many people
attended the meeting, (b) how many attendees complained about cycling on
the pavement and (c) whether police officers attempted to address any of
the concerns raised (e.g. by explaining that the Highway Code does apply
to cyclists).

4) Can you please send me any Metropolitan Police editorial policies
around the publishing and content of Safer Neighbourhood Teams'
newsletters? More specifically, I would like to know (a) who is generally
responsible for authoring these newsletters, (b) if anyone senior to the
author(s) is reviewing these newsletters prior to them being published and
distributed and (c) if there are any rules which govern what can or can't
be written in these newsletters.

EXTENT OF SEARCHES TO LOCATE INFORMATION

To locate the information relevant to your request searches were conducted
at Swiss Cottage Safer Neighbour Team and Central Safer Neighbour Teams.

RESULT OF SEARCHES

The searches located the below records relevant to your request.

DECISION

Question One:
With respect to the claim that "So many people have been frightened or
injured by pavement cyclists" please send me any information held by the
Swiss Cottage Ward Safe Neighbourhoods Team (or any other part of the
Metropolitan police) that substantiates this claim.

We do not hold information that would capture this request. The 'People
being frightened or injured' came from those in attendance at the meeting
rather than actual reports.

Question Two:
With respect to the suggestion that "all these measures could be
considered", is it an official policy of the Metropolitan Police that any
of the measures listed above (such as number plates & licensing for
cyclists) should be proposed to the government?

'All measures could be considered' is what the public wanted i.e. they
want there local councillors to look into doing something, their MP's etc.
As was explained at the meeting things like trying to get number plates on
bikes is not something that the MPS can arrange, that would have to be
done by their MP's. It's just one of a number of ideas that the public
wanted aired.

Question three:
Can you please send me any official minutes or other notes from the Public
Meeting mentioned in the above newsletter that show what was discussed
during the "very lively session" on the subject of cycling on the
pavement? In particular, is there any record of (a) how many people
attended the meeting, (b) how many attendees complained about cycling on
the pavement and (c) whether police officers attempted to address any of
the concerns raised (e.g. by explaining that the Highway Code does apply
to cyclists).

I have attached the minutes. I have redacted some of the names by virtue
of s.40(2) governing personal information. The relevant sections from the
Freedom of Information can be found in the legal appendix below.

In order for the exemption provided under Section 40(2) FoIA to be engaged
disclosure of the requested information must satisfy either the first or
second condition as defined by subsections 3 and 4. In this instance the
disclosure of the requested information would lead to identification of
third party individuals. Therefore, as this would breach principle one of
the Data Protection Act, the duty of data controllers to process personal
information fairly and lawfully, and would fail to meet Condition 6 of
Schedule 2 of the DPA we see no legitimate interest in releasing any
information we hold for this purpose.

I am of the considered opinion not to disclose the first document. In this
case the legitimate expectations of individuals, possibly identifiable
within the information requested is that their information will not be
disseminated within the public domain. Their legitimate expectation would
be that their personal information would be treated confidentially and not
disclosed to the public. It is my considered opinion that an individual is
entitled to a certain level of privacy regarding their identity and
thereby the release of this piece of information has the potential risk of
identifying the individual(s) concerned.

(a) how many people attended the meeting,
There were 55 Swiss Cottage residents in attendance.

(b) how many attendees complained about cycling on the pavement
All those in attendance, when asked to voted that cycling on the pavement
was an issue.

(c) whether police officers attempted to address any of the concerns
raised (e.g. by explaining that the Highway Code does apply to cyclists).
As with every time anyone brings up cycling on the pavement we have
explained that the High way code and certain road traffic offences also
concern cyclists.

Question 4:
Can you please send me any Metropolitan Police editorial policies around
the publishing and content of Safer Neighbourhood Teams' newsletters? More
specifically, I would like to know (a) who is generally responsible for
authoring these newsletters, (b) if anyone senior to the author(s) is
reviewing these newsletters prior to them being published and distributed
and (c) if there are any rules which govern what can or can't be written
in these newsletters.

There is not a policy but there is guidance on content and production. I
have provided you with this guidance because this is pertinent to your
request.

(a) who is generally responsible for authoring these newsletters
Generally newsletters are approved by a Chief Inspector working alongside
the borough press liaison officer. However, boroughs put local processes
in place that work for them and draw on available and appropriate
resources.

(b) if anyone senior to the author(s) is reviewing these newsletters prior
to them being published and distributed
Again, this is a local decision as to how the process should work to
ensure quality newsletters are produced.

(c) if there are any rules which govern what can or can't be written in
these newsletters.
There are no rules, but as mentioned above we do provide guidance on what
should and shouldn't be included in the newsletters.

Yours Sincerely,

Holly Hall

Information Manager
Camden Borough Police

Legal Appendix:

s.17 Refusal of request provides:
(1) A public authority which, in relation to any request for information,
is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision of Part II relating
to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request or on a claim
that information is exempt information must, within the time for complying
with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice which-
(a) states that fact,
(b) specifies the exemption in question, and
(c) states (if that would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption
applies.

s.40 Personal information provides:

(1) Any information to which a request for information relates is exempt
information if it constitutes personal data of which the applicant is the
data subject.
(2) Any information to which a request for information relates is also
exempt information if-
(a) it constitutes personal data which do not fall within subsection (1),
and
(b) either the first or the second condition below is satisfied.
(3) The first condition is-
(a) in a case where the information falls within any of paragraphs (a) to
(d) of the definition of "data" in section 1(1) of the [1998 c. 29.] Data
Protection Act 1998, that the disclosure of the information to a member of
the public otherwise than under this Act would contravene-
(i) any of the data protection principles, or
(ii) section 10 of that Act (right to prevent processing likely to cause
damage or distress), and
(b) in any other case, that the disclosure of the information to a member
of the public otherwise than under this Act would contravene any of the
data protection principles if the exemptions in section 33A(1) of the
[1998 c. 29.] Data Protection Act 1998 (which relate to manual data held
by public authorities) were disregarded.
(4) The second condition is that by virtue of any provision of Part IV of
the [1998 c. 29.] Data Protection Act 1998 the information is exempt from
section 7(1)(c) of that Act (data subject's right of access to personal
data).

Schedule 2, Condition 6 of the Data Protection Act provides:

6 (1) The processing is necessary for the purposes of legitimate interests
pursued by the data controller or by the third party or parties to whom
the data are disclosed, except where the processing is unwarranted in any
particular case by reason of prejudice to the rights and freedoms or
legitimate interests of the data subject.
(2) The Secretary of State may by order specify particular circumstances
in which this condition is, or is not, to be taken to be satisfied.

Data Protection Act:

http://www.opsi.gov.uk/Acts/Acts1998/ukp...

Personal Data is defined by Section 1 of the Data Protection Act as data
that relates to a living individual who can be identified.

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