Stand-up comic and cop stars in NUJ police training video
Stand-up comic and "serving copper" Alfie Moore - © nuj
7 September 2016
Alfie Moore, an experienced police officer who turned to stand-up comedy during a career break, has fronted a video commissioned by the NUJ explaining reporters’ and photographers’ rights during demonstrations and riots.
He uses humour to get across important points as part of a public order training video for police officers in England and Wales.
The video, shot by Rob Whitehouse, answers questions such as do photographer need a permit to take pictures in a public place and can the police seize journalists’ film? The five-minute film will be incorporated into all licensed command courses at the College of Policing and added to the police service knowledge data base to inform good practice.
It explains that journalists are there to do a job and, despite the often-challenging situations officers find themselves during episodes of civil disorder, the police should help the press so they can gather accurate information.
John Toner, NUJ freelance organiser, said:
“We are delighted by the enthusiasm of the police for the film. Over the years we have addressed officers on public order training courses on a number of occasions, but that would amount to around 200 officers on each occasion.
“The film will be viewed by thousands of officers each year, and we hope it will make a difference to their understanding of the rights of photographers and film-makers.
“Rob Whitehouse had excellent co-operation from police forces in the making of the film, and that co-operation continues in the speed with which the various forces and the National Public Order and Public Safety Committee are deploying the film.”
Commander BJ Harrington, head of the Met's Public Order Unit, said:
"Working alongside each other on the streets, in fast changing and developing situations on public order events, is sometimes challenging, the police have a job to do, and so do the photographers and journalists.
"By taking part in a police training video, the NUJ have given the police an insight into their work. The video will be incorporated into learning packages for officers wishing to be public order trained. The MPS is grateful to the NUJ for suggesting and offering their time to take part in this project, which can only help to assist both parties moving forward."
Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, said:
"Both the police and journalists work often work in challenging circumstances. In a humorous and simple way this film tackles the rights of journalists and photographers covering incidents in public places and underlines how both sides can best engage in a constructive way.
"As Alfie Moore points out in the film, it is all about both sides being able to do their jobs so journalists are able to properly tell the story to their communities."
The NUJ has called for an “open and collaborative relationship between the police and the press” in its submission to the College of Policing consultation on draft guidelines for police and media relations. The union says plans to channel all communication through police press officers will not work.
NUJ police training video