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Undercover police to patrol pubs and clubs to keep women safe from 'predatory' men


The officers, who’ll be wearing plain clothes, will be tasked to actively identify predatory and suspicious offenders at night, reports Gloucestershire Live.

Dubbed ‘Project Vigilant’, the scheme will be part of “immediate steps” to improve security after the alleged murder of Sarah Everard in south London.

The Safer Streets fund – money given to local authorities through council grants – will also be doubled to £45million so better lighting and CCTV can be installed in major UK cities.

Project Vigilant was originally launched in 2019 by Thames Valley Police, and last year won a crime prevention award from the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

But Boris Johnson, who chaired a meeting of the Government’s Crime and Justice Taskforce to secure these measures, also stressed the criminal justice system must be more functional.

“Ultimately, we must drive out violence against women and girls and make every part of the criminal justice system work to better protect and defend them,” the Prime Minister said.

“The horrific case of Sarah Everard has unleashed a wave of feeling about women not feeling safe at night. We must do everything we can to ensure our streets are safe.”

Ministers, he added, are committed to working with police forces and with police and crime commissioners across the country to ensure the measures are more focused on preventing sexual violence.

Demonstrators again took to the streets of central London to protest at the policing of a vigil for Ms Everard on Saturday.

There were a number of arrests after the police ordered the protesters to disperse, warning they were in breach of coronavirus regulations.

Serving Metropolitan Police officer Wayne Couzens, 48, has been charged with her kidnapping and murder.

Mr Johnson acknowledged that the scenes – when a number of women were arrested – had been “distressing” but said the police had a “very, very difficult job” to do.

He said that Sir Thomas Winsor, chief inspector of constabulary, would be carrying out a review into the way the event was policed.

“I think people have got to have confidence in the police and Tom’s going to look at that,” he added.


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