KENT POLICE MESSAGE IN LIGHT OF MANCHESTER BOMBING

Following the terror attack in Manchester arena on 22nd May 2017 where, 22 people have been killed and investigations are on-going, can I please remind you of the need to remain alert but not alarmed around the threat in the UK from International Terrorism, which has been raised to “critical”. This means the UK Government expects an “imminent” attack in the UK. However, at the current time there continues to be no specific threat to Kent. In some Forces you may see the military on the streets however at this stage the people of Kent are unlikely to see military personnel patrolling our communities.

We have implemented a range of activities from our ‘move to critical’ plan and will keep this under constant review. We have a full command structure in place including a Strategic Command Group to keep all partners updated.

Kent Police regularly reviews existing security measures, allocates patrols where required and listens to concerns to ensure we respond in a measured way.

We have previously circulated the STAY SAFE principles (Run, Hide, Tell) but if you have not seen this then please read the information and watch the video on the Government’s Stay Safe guidance available on gov.uk. The link https://www.kent.police.uk/advice/terrorism/ takes you to the external website with posters in various languages (English, Hebrew, Hindi, Nepali, Punjabi, Urdu and Arabic) which can be placed in key locations of interest/places of worship.

Public safety is our priority so Kent Police and our partners are using proven operational tactics to ensure the public is well prepared and protected. We are also working closely with other national charities/groups such as Community Security Trust (Protecting Jewish Communities) and Tell MAMA UK (Measuring anti-Muslim attacks). You may notice heightened activity around significant/religious events and where required there will be visible community policing. This is intended to make all communities, sectors and sites feel safe and protected. Communities should always feel comfortable asking questions of any officers if they have concerns – whether they are carrying firearms or not.

There is always potential for tension between communities in the UK and people must have the confidence to report hate crime. Incidents of hate crime could increase as experience shows protagonists are often unable to differentiate between different communities or faith groups. If you believe you are the victim of, or witness, a hate crime please report it via the details below or the dedicated hate crime reporting website http://www.report-it.org.uk.

Remember, communities defeat terrorism so I urge you to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity, concerns or local tensions to us. Language is not a barrier, as we have translators where required. If you have information, and concerns, regarding individuals who may be intending to travel to, or who have returned from, Syria and Iraq then please contact our specialist officers in Special Branch in addition to the Anti-Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321.
You will also find advice on the Kent Police website: http://www.kent.police.uk/advice/community_safety/terrorism/terrorism_prevent.html

Non-urgent information can be communicated to Kent Police on 101 – or 01622 690690 from outside the county. Deaf or speech-impaired people can text message the word ‘police’ then leave a space and write their message and send it to 60066. Always dial 999 if there is an emergency, crime is in progress or life is in danger.