PM Statement on disorder in England
[transcript courtesy of the BBC]
“The whole country has been shocked by the most appalling scenes of people looting, violence, vandalising and thieving. It is criminality pure and simple. And there is absolutely no excuse for it.
We have seen houses, offices and shops raided and torched…
… police officers assaulted and fire crews attacked as they try to put out fires…
… people robbing others while they lie injured and bleeding in the street…
…and even three innocent people being deliberately run over and killed in Birmingham.
Mr Speaker, we will not put up with this in our country. We will not allow a culture of fear to exist on our streets. And we will do whatever it takes to restore law and order and to rebuild our communities.”
What went wrong
“First, let us be clear about the sequence of events. A week ago today, a 29 year old man named Mark Duggan was shot dead by the police in Tottenham…
…It is simply preposterous for anyone to suggest that people looting in Tottenham at the weekend, still less three days later Salford, were in any way doing so because of the death of Mark Duggan.”
“Mr Speaker, everyone watching these horrific actions will be stuck by how they were organised via social media. Free flow of information can be used for good. But it can also be used for ill.
And when people are using social media for violence we need to stop them.
So we are working with the Police, the intelligence services and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services when we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality.”
Tacking the deeper problems
“This is not about poverty, it’s about culture. A culture that glorifies violence, shows disrespect to authority, and says everything about rights but nothing about responsibilities.
But we need a benefit system that rewards work and that is on the side of families.
We need more discipline in our schools.
We need action to deal with the most disruptive families.
And we need a criminal justice system that scores a clear, heavy line between right and wrong.
In short, all the action necessary to help mend our broken society.
“We need to show them that we will address our broken society and restore a sense of stronger sense of morality and responsibility – in every town, in every street and in every estate…
And a year away from the Olympics, we need to show them the Britain that doesn’t destroy, but that builds; that doesn’t give up but stands up; that doesn’t look back, but always forwards.”