Frontline enforcement officers will be wearing body cameras in a bid to improve evidence gathering and the safety of staff and residents.
Cabinet members at Wigan Council Thursday 4th July approved the introduction of Body Worn Video (BWV) following a successful trial period to aid the prevention, detection and prosecution of environmental crimes such as fly-tipping within the borough.
Not only will it help clampdown on those who flout the law but it will protect our staff when they sometimes face aggressive and threatening behaviour in their day-to-day work.
The use of body worn cameras has seen a big increase with many other local authorities dealing with enforcement activities already demonstrating the positives of widespread use. The device will be clearly marked and officers will inform an individual that a recording is taking place prior to the BWV being switched on.
Paul Barton, Wigan Council’s director for the environment said: “Ensuring our streets are clean and tidy is a huge priority for us and we hope the Body Worn Video will contribute to this.
“The use of body cameras should help increase public confidence in the way we collect evidence and hopefully help modify behaviour by implementing a more pro-active approach to tackling environmental crimes. As well as gaining vital footage for possible prosecution, we want to ensure our hard-working teams can do their job without fear and help keep members of the public safe.”
To ensure security, any recordings made will be held and managed securely with access controlled by designated officers with authorisation to view specific incidents.
BWV will be also used in accordance with Criminal Procedure and Investigations Act 1996, General Data Protection Regulation 2018, Human Rights Act 1998 and Freedom of Information Act 2000.