https://homeofficemedia.blog.gov.uk/2018/10/23/home-office-in-the-media-blog-tuesday-23-october/

Home Office in the media blog: Tuesday 23 October

Today’s Home Office media stories include the Women and Equalities Committee report on sexual harassment in public spaces; the Police Federation legal challenge of the police pay award and National Ballistic Intelligence Service figures that show they are on track to analyse record numbers of gun parts.

Women and Equalities report on sexual harassment

There is widespread reporting of calls by the Women and Equalities Committee on the Government to take action to tackle sexual harassment in public spaces.

The Committee of MPs is calling for urgent action to tackle street harassment of women and young girls following a nine-month inquiry.

The Committee has said the “relentless” nature of the harassment means it is "normalised" when girls are growing up, "contributing to a wider negative cultural effect on society".

A Government spokesperson said:

"Unwelcome advances that intimidate, degrade or humiliate women and girls are an abuse of power and unlawful. Whether in the home, the workplace or in public, sexual harassment is unacceptable.

"The Government has made protecting women and girls from all forms of violence, and supporting victims and survivors a key priority.

"To support the Government's commitment to tackling violence against women and girls, we have pledged £100 million in funding until 2020 and will be updating our Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy to ensure that we are doing all that we can to tackle crimes which disproportionately impact on women.”

Police body launches legal action against Government over pay offer

The Police Federation has lodged an application for a judicial review of the decision to ignore the independent Police Renumeration Review Board’s (PRRB) recommendation that police should be given a 3% pay rise and instead award a 2% rise.

Coverage was carried in The Independent and The Times newspapers.

A Home Office spokesperson said:

"We are grateful to all police officers for the incredible job they do — and will continue to ensure they have the resources they need to do their jobs effectively.

"The police pay award for 2018/19 represents the highest consolidated pay award since 2010. And the number of people joining police forces is at a 10 year high which demonstrates policing is still a desirable and sought-after career.

"We are unable to comment, however, on potential future legal proceedings.”

National Ballistic Intelligence Service figures

New figures from The National Ballistic Intelligence Service show that the volume of guns, ammunition and gun parts sent to its laboratories for analysis is likely to reach a record high this year.

The Times is the only paper writing up these figures.

A Home Office spokesperson said:

"The UK has some of the toughest gun laws in the world. We are determined to keep it that way, which is why we are strengthening firearms controls further.

“We included in the Policing and Crime Act 2017 measures to prevent people from converting imitation firearms into live firing weapons and created a new offence of making a defectively deactivated weapon available for sale or as a gift."