MIL-OSI UK Cities: Residents to be given say on YouTube series designed to catch fly-tippers

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Source: City of Birmingham

Published: Monday, 19th July 2021

Plans for a YouTube video series to help catch the culprits of fly-tipping in Birmingham are set to take a step forward when the city council’s Cabinet meets next week.

A report to Cabinet on July 27 will seek permission to carry out a period of public consultation on the plans for the “Grime Watch” series, a consultation that is necessary to ensure the use of CCTV footage featuring environmental criminals carrying out offences is compliant with the rules related to surveillance camera activity.

Grime Watch – a concept inspired on a “Wall of Shame” series produced by the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham – is being funded as part of the wider £7.2million investment into street scene services announced here in Birmingham recently.

A total of £110,000 is being used to purchase ten new mobile CCTV cameras which can be redeployed to sites around the city as necessary, with the Grime Watch series’ start-up costs representing a further £68,000 investment into one of the top priorities of local people – cleaner, greener, streets.

Cllr John O’Shea, Cabinet Member for Street Scene and Parks, said: “The consultation into the use of CCTV for Grime Watch is an essential part of our preparations for the scheme.

“We need to let people know what the intentions are for the project, how the footage will be used and are required to seek their views and opinions.

“People who fly-tip in our city have no respect or regard for our shared environment, so we want to do everything we can within the rules to find those responsible when all other avenues of investigation have been exhausted. We think sharing footage of those we have yet to identify with the general public to seek their assistance is a proportionate way in which we can do this.”

Subject to Cabinet approving the start of a consultation process, it will then be placed on the council’s Be Heard consultation hub for public response, with an intended launch date in autumn of this year, pending the outcome of the consultation.

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