'Outraged' North Yorkshire Fire Brigades Union members condemn Philip Allott's comments about murdered Sarah Everard
Members of the Fire Brigades Union have condemned their commissioner for comments he made regarding the murder of York woman Sarah Everard
Philip Allott, the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for York and North Yorkshire, said in an interview on Friday that Ms Everard, 33, should not have submitted to her false arrest by serving Met police officer Wayne Couzens.
Couzens used his warrant card to falsely arrest Ms Everard. He then kidnapped, raped and murdered her.
Mr Allott also said women should be “streetwise” and learn their rights around arrests in the wake of Couzens’ crimes, which earlier this week saw him sentenced to life in prison.
"All public sector leaders that deal in trust should be reflecting on the lessons that can be learned from this tragedy and looking at how this can be avoided in the future, rather than blaming victims. This criticism and concern is not in regard to rank-and-file police officers but in relation to the comments made by the PFCC.
"Given the laws that surround the election of PFCCs and MPs, Mr Allott's future is largely in his own hands. FBU members have made clear to us what his next steps should be.
"Our members universally condemn Mr Allott's comments and perspectives on this tragedy, and I can assure the public it is not reflective of the views of North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service and the membership of North Yorkshire Fire Brigades Union."
“Clearly, I have much to learn, so as well as committing to working ever more closely with subject-matter expert colleagues in my own organisation and beyond, I will be seeking meetings as soon as possible with local partner organisations across North Yorkshire and the City of York that provide services to tackle male violence against women and girls, in order to deliver on their concerns and broaden my understanding of the issues.
“I hope that all those reading this statement will accept my apology and the commitment I have given to my own learning – and to driving forward positive progress in keeping our communities safe.”