#AfterDispatches community response

April 30, 2020

In a short film made by LGT, Gypsies and Travellers are sharing their responses to Channel 4 Dispatches programme The Truth about Traveller Crime.

Since the programme was aired on 16th April, LGT has been gathering reactions from Gypsies and Travellers in London and beyond to feed into its formal complaints to Channel 4 and Ofcom, and to broadcast community voices more widely.

LGT Vice Chair of Trustees Marian Mahoney said: “We have always had a good relationship with the police and I don’t think the police would leave crime go unnoticed no matter the race or culture of people. The programme is inciting racial hatred and destroying the very good work that Travellers and Gypsies have done through integrating with the settled community and the people in authority.”

Matt Cooper, who owns a roofing and construction business, said: “We are being discriminated hugely and this programme on Channel 4 will now have an effect on our children even further in schools. This will cause huge amounts of bullying, racial abuse and discrimination to be thrown at our children.”

We also heard from young people in the community. Angela Mahoney, a qualified care worker, said: “What gives them the right to paint everyone with the same brush? I went through secondary school, and people tried to bully me about my background. And for them to paint me as a criminal because I am an Irish Traveller, it disturbs me. This also affects the lives of my nephews and the life of the rest of my family, and could damage my future because I am a care worker, and my clients might judge me because of the Dispatches programme.”

Drewy Price, a City and Guilds qualified construction worker, said: “She [the reporter] put us all in the same category. It was discrimination. In any community there are bad people. If you put coloured beads in a jar and say all the yellow are criminals so all the other colours are too, that would be ridiculous.”

LGT hopes the short film will amplify the strength of feeling in the community and inspire others to speak out against prejudice and discrimination.
If you would like to contribute to the campaign, record a short video or audio message and post it on social media with the hashtag #AfterDispatches

More news

Injunctions under review

December 16, 2020

On Thursday 17th December 2020, a major case management hearing will take place ahead of an upcoming High Court case on anti-Traveller wide injunctions, due to be held in January 2021. Since 2015, councils have increasingly used injunctions to prevent Gypsies and Travellers from stopping on council-owned land. The majority of people who pull up …

New challenge to government planning rules

November 26, 2020

A court hearing on 10th and 11th December could determine that the government’s planning definition of Gypsies and Travellers is unlawful. The current planning definition, adopted in 2015, means that Gypsies and Travellers who have permanently stopped travelling in a caravan for work do not have their accommodation needs counted and struggle to get planning …

National Lottery funds new ‘Roadside Futures’ project

October 28, 2020

‘Roadside Futures’ project to improve lives of roadside Gypsies and Travellers across the UK, thanks to National Lottery funding Today, £2million in National Lottery funding has been awarded to ‘Roadside Futures’ which is a project that aims to improve the quality of life for nomadic Gypsies and Travellers and the communities in which they live …