IMMIGRATION: Police prepare for ‘peaceful protest’ as campaigners label report ‘twaddle’

Dean Everitt
Dean Everitt

CAMPAIGNERS have said they will stage a protest next month to highlight issues caused by immigration in Boston - and police say they are prepared to handle the demonstration.

Dean Everitt, the man behind last year’s aborted protest march, has confirmed that a static demonstration will be taking place in the town centre to try to raise awareness about problems caused by population change.

It comes after the publication of a report on the social impact of population change, which campaigners say fell short of tackling many of the issues caused by a rapid increase in the number of migrants from Eastern Europe.

Commenting on the report, Mr Everitt said: “You’ve got three positives that have come out of it, and the rest is a load of twaddle.”

Mr Everitt said the positives to emerge from the report were a zero-tolerance approach to street drinking, a recommendation for border authorities to monitor EU vehicles entering and leaving the country, and police plans to enforce a restorative justice programme to deal with anti-social behaviour.

He added: “It’s time we stood up and said the government has got to do something, because the council can’t do anything.”

The protest has been arranged for November 18 outside the Assembly Rooms.

Chief Insp Paul Timmins, of Lincolnshire Police, said: “Lincolnshire Police have a positive obligation to facilitate peaceful protest under the Human Rights legislation. Any potential protest will be carefully planned and anyone intent on causing public disorder will be dealt with robustly. Public safety and confidence is of utmost importance and will be at the forefront of our discussions in relation to this issue.”

Coun Paul Kenny, who chaired the committee which put together the report, urged protesters to instead have their say at a special meeting on October 18.

He added: “They have got every right to do whatever they want to do, but if they have got any comments they can come to the meeting to put their views forward. I welcome the opportunity to get more opinion.”

The report, out last week, included evidence gathered during a four-month inquiry on issues including education, employment and policing. Some of the 28 recommendations put forward include lobbying the Government for more support.

Boston MP Mark Simmonds told The Standard: “I think it is very positive that Boston Borough Council are looking closely at this issue and are examining the effects of population growth and inward migration on local services. I will be very interested to see the public’s response to the draft report as it stands at the moment.”