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Bury traffic wardens are set to be kitted out with cameras fitted discreetly in their clothing and headwear.

Edesix features in this article by Dale Haslam, click here to read in full.

 

The move is being taken to protect staff, who are sometimes on the receiving end of abuse from motorists disputing parking tickets,

The idea has come from NSL, whose wardens enforce parking restrictions on the borough's off-street car parks and on-street parking spaces.

In April this year, two shirtless men attacked an NSL traffic warden in Hampstead, London, in a dispute about a parking ticket.


The 45-year-old warden was treated in hospital for head and facial injuries and needed six weeks off work to recover.

A passing witness filmed the attack on his mobile phone, which led to the conviction of the two men.

Fitting wardens with cameras could deter such incidents, bring offenders to justice, and also protect motorists, whose account of any disagreement might otherwise be disputed.

In July, The Bury Times reported on a man's complaint about the way a bailiff, carrying out instructions for Bury Council, treated him at his house.

Originally, Bury Council dismissed the complaint, but changed its perspective when it emerged that a bodycam worn by the bailiff recorded the incident.

The Local Government Ombudsman rebuked the council and ordered it to apologise to the complainant.

An NSL spokesperson said: "Recording devices provide an impartial factual record of events and have been shown to support staff in difficult situations and ensure a positive outcome for all.

"Staff safety and professionalism is of utmost importance and we are known for our expertise, training and continuous improvement at NSL.

"In 2014 we helped over 2,000 of our staff to achieve real qualifications pertinent to their roles helping to ensure we deliver safe and compliant public services in highly regulated environments.

"We use technology, and the right processes too, to help support our staff in these environments."

The use of such body and headcams by NSL will be regulated by the Information Commissioner, whose office is responsible for overseeing how data is kept and protected.


Bury Council has started a public consultation to canvass people's views on the use of the cams and people can take part by e-mailing dataprotection@nsl.co.uk or writing to BC PIA Consultation, Level 4, Westgate House, London, W5 1YY before December 10.

The NSL spokesman added: "Cameras are only activated when justified and all data is encrypted.

"Frontline staff are not able to view or edit the footage, which then gets transferred to a dedicated secure storage facility at the end of each shift where it remains for no more than 90 days (unless required for investigation) before being deleted."