Harlow MP Robert Halfon contnues to campaign on traveller issue in parliament

Politics / Tue 10th Feb 2015 at 06:26pm

HARLOW MP, Robert Halfon has once again stood up for residents by raising Harlow’s illegal encampments in the House of Commons. During Communities and Local Government Questions, Robert asked the Minister for Policing, Mike Penning, to set out what powers are available to Essex Police in dealing with the illegal encampments.

The Minister went on to say that he will meet the Chief Constable of Essex Police again, and that he has written to the Police with the powers available saying that they should be using them.

Robert has campaigned hard for the Police to use all the powers available to them, and has met with the Police on multiple occasions to discuss what else can be done. He has also organised debates in Parliament, and met with the local Council. Harlow Conservatives recently condemned the Labour-led Harlow Council voting against extra resources to deal with illegal encampments during their Budget debate.

The exchange in the House of Commons went:

Robert Halfon (Harlow) (Con):

My right hon. Friend will be aware that in Harlow we have had more than 100 illegal Traveller encampments over the past year, causing huge amounts of misery for local residents. The chief constable of Essex says that he does not have enough powers to deal with that and cites the human rights of the Travellers. Will my right hon. Friend meet the chief constable and set out what powers there are for him to deal with this problem?

Mike Penning:

This is a very important issue across our constituencies. I praise my hon. Friend for the work he has done to highlight the massive issues and massive cost of illegal sites. I will meet the chief constable of Essex again, but I, with the local government Minister, my hon. Friend the Member for Great Yarmouth (Brandon Lewis), have written to him to highlight the powers that the police have and that they should be using them.

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