Parliament to debate new anti-terrorism security rules for sites

New legislation, dubbed Martyn’s Law in memory of Manchester Arena bombing victim Martyn Hett, will be introduced to ensure stronger protection against terrorism in public places.

Mr Hett, 29, was one of 22 people killed in the attack at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on May 22, 2017.

The new rules, which Mr Hett’s mother Figen Murray has long campaigned for, will cover the whole of the UK and require venues and local authorities to have preventive action plans against terrorist attacks, the official said. government.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said he was committed to working with Ms Murray to improve security measures in public places, with the government planning to publish a bill in early spring.

Martyn Hett, 29, was one of 22 people killed in the May 2017 attack (Family handout/PA)

Martyn’s Law will follow a tiered model related to the type of activity taking place and the size of the audience expected, and will seek to improve venue preparation without placing an undue burden on businesses.

A standard level will apply to pitches with a maximum capacity of more than 100 people. Sites will need to take effective and inexpensive measures such as training, sharing information and developing a preparedness plan.

An upgraded tier will focus on high capacity slots. Those that can hold 800 people or more will need to undertake an additional risk assessment that will inform the development and implementation of a thorough security plan.

The government will also establish an inspection and enforcement regime, imposing penalties for breaches, and provide tailored legal guidance and support.

Ms Murray said she received the news on what would have been Mr Hett’s 35th birthday.

“I got a phone call from Rishi Sunak himself on Thursday morning which was amazing as it was actually Martyn’s 35th birthday,” she said.

“The Prime Minister knew about the anniversary, so he mentioned it at the start, which was kind of nice of him.

“I told him it was the best birthday present I could have hoped for for Martyn.”

The Glade of Light Memorial to the victims of the Manchester Arena attack

The Glade of Light Memorial to the victims of the Manchester Arena attack (PA)

She added that her son would be “tickled pink” if he was here to hear about the legislation.

“He would be tickled pink, I would say, he would be really touched,” she said.

“But I think, on a more serious note, he would be really happy that something as important as this kind of legislation, in his name, could save lives in the future.”

Praising Ms Murray’s campaign, Mr Sunak said: ‘The way the City of Manchester has come together as a community following the cowardly attack on Manchester Arena, and the incredible work of campaigners like Figen Murray who have dedicated their lives to making us safer and more secure. promoting kindness and tolerance, is an inspiration to all of us.

“I am committed to working with Figen to improve security measures in public places and spaces and to put in place this vital legislation to honor the memory of Martyn and all those affected by terrorism.”

Home Secretary Suella Braverman thanked Ms Murray and her campaign for their “tireless efforts”.

“Protecting the public from harm is a core responsibility of any government. The terrorist threat we face is diverse and constantly evolving, which is why this bill is so important.

“I would like to thank Figen Murray and the Martyn’s Law campaign for their support in developing this vital reform.

“Their tireless efforts have helped inform our approach, and the heartbreaking stories of survivors and their families are a constant reminder of why we must uphold this commitment to work together to improve public safety.”

Brendan Cox, widower of slain MP Jo Cox and co-founder of Survivors Against Terror, also praised Ms Murray for her “passion and drive” in bringing Martyn’s Law to fruition.

He wrote on Twitter: “She turned her loss into a legacy that will make us all safer.

“Of course, this law will not stop all terrorist attacks. But it will be harder for terrorists to find soft targets and reduce the impact of attacks by ensuring public places have a plan.

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