Minister ‘open to discussion’ about fireworks ban
Organizers of clashes in Edinburgh have prompted the Justice Secretary of Scotland to say she is “open to discussion” about a fireworks ban.
During Sunday’s attacks, youths threw fireworks, petrol bombs, and masonry at police and firefighters.
According to Angela Constance, ministers do not have the power to ban, but she was “open-minded” about it.
A total of eight police officers were injured in incidents in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Cammy Day, the leader of City of Edinburgh Council, announced he would consider implementing firework control zones.
Additionally, he said he supported a ban on the sale of fireworks to the general public.
“I’m open minded about it. I’m open to discussion. Outright bans aren’t within our power, but I’m open to it,” Ms Constance said.
In Scotland, last year, a new law was passed restricting the sale of fireworks and making it an offence to buy them for children.
Ms Constance denied that cuts in education, outreach and preventative services contributed to violence against emergency services as claimed by the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) and the former children’s commissioner for Scotland.
A government official said: “This government continues to invest in preventative services, whether it is through the cash back program, which supports over 33,000 young people, or the violence reduction framework, which invests £2 million.
There should be an emergency response to incidents of serious disorder, and the law must be enforced.”
In his Monday speech, Mr Day called on action to prevent similar incidents in the future.
I would hate to think what will happen the next time we don’t do something quite drastic about the public sale of fireworks, he said.