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The importance of Martyn’s Law following damning security report into Manchester Arena attack

A report into security failings on the night of the Manchester Arena attack has found that "changes need to be made without delay” to prevent future catastrophic events.

Sir John Saunders, the Chair of the Inquiry, said the security arrangements at the Arena failed to prevent or minimise the terrorist attack.

22 people lost their lives at the Ariana Grande concert in May 2017.

Currently, venue owners have no obligation to act on free advice from specialist counter-terrorism officers or on how to reduce the risk of a terror attack.

One impassioned mother, Figen Murray, who is the mother of victim Martyn Hett, has been on a mission to ensure more lives are not lost in future attacks by campaigning for a new law in her son’s name; Martyn’s Law.

Figen told the public inquiry into the bombing in November 2020 that "the stakes are too high" for further delay.

"We just cannot wait for Covid-19 to end", she said, adding that an "additional worry" was the uncertainty about how many people will have been radicalised online during lockdown.

The proposed legislation, which would also introduce stricter security measures, has been designed to apply to any place or space that the public has access to, from small cafes to large arenas.

Martyn’s Law proposes five key requirements for any publicly accessible location. These requirements are –

    1. A requirement that spaces and places to which the public have access engage with freely available counterterrorism advice and training.
    2. A requirement for those places to conduct vulnerability assessments of their operating places and spaces.
    3. A requirement for those places to have a mitigation plan for the risks created by the vulnerabilities.
    4. A requirement for those places to have a counter-terrorism plan.
    5. A requirement for local authorities to plan for the threat of terrorism.

Building on Martyn’s Law, the government launched an 18-week consultation to develop plans to make it a legal requirement for public places to improve security measures.

When will the changes be made?

Following Figen Murray’s campaign, club and venues in Manchester were asked to adopt new anti-terror measures. And in January 2020, Manchester City Council said it would be the first city in the UK to bring in the changes by adopting the new licensing rules. However, this was delayed due to the Covid pandemic.

The council's current proposals, including conditions for venues and counter terrorism training, will be presented to the council's licensing committee in July.

Great Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said: "I am encouraged that the Chair has called for an overhaul of the law in relation to security at venues and this is an endorsement of the outstanding campaigning work of Figen Murray, mother of Martyn Hett.

"The Government will have our full support in legislating for a Protect Duty, which here in Greater Manchester will always be known as Martyn's Law and which will always remind us of each and every one of the 22 individual lives that were lost on that night."

When asked what her son would think of her campaign to make changes, Figen Murray told ITV news: “Actually I hope Martyn would be really pleased about the work I’ve done, to get a positive outcome, to keep people safe. Sadly that's too late for him and the other families.”

Here at TyTek Medical we fully support the legislation behind Martyn’s Law. We believe having tighter security in place and easily accessible medical supplies in place at public places will bridge the gap between incident and response helping to save lives in the event of an emergency. Our President Chris Tyler was honored to meet Figen Murray OBE at a Major Events Summit recently to further understand more about her campaign. In turn Figen was hugely impressed with our Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) system.

 

Source: ITV News

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