Venue security: Martyn's Law moves to consultation stage
Progress has been made on Martyn’s Law after the Government confirmed it has launched a consultation, 26 February.
The proposed anti-terror legislation is named after Martyn Hett, one of the 22 victims of the Manchester Arena bombing in 2017, and has been championed by his mother Figen Murray (pictured).
The consultation is expected to last 18 weeks and will have input from counter-terror police, who will establish how the law will work in practice and to whom it will apply.
The Government have backed the plans for enhanced venue security, although the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic delayed activity.
The Protect Duty, which has evolved from Martyn’s Law, includes proposals for the introduction of free counter-terror training for event staff, assessments of locations to measure vulnerability, the need for venues and local authorities to have clear counter-terror action plans, and more thorough security checks, including bag searches.
At present, there is no obligation for any venue to act on advice relating to terror threat activity.
Murray described the latest update as a major stride towards making the UK country safer.
“To make Martyn's Law a reality is of huge relief and I look forward to making a lasting difference with all of those who have supported it,” she said.
“My focus will always be to stop such violent acts from happening again because Martyn and the other 21 victims cannot have lost their lives for nothing.”
In a statement, home secretary Priti Patel said: “We will always take the strongest possible action to protect our national security.
“That is why we want all organisations responsible for public venues and spaces to put public safety and security first.”
Venue security was high on the agenda within the events industry before the pandemic took hold, after two people were killed in a terrorist attack at a conference at Fishmonger’s Hall, London, on 30 November 2019.