The riots earlier this week have prompted some positive responses – from the “broom brigade” using Twitter to organise a clean-up to those displaying humour in the face of adversity.
Former Labour councillor Roy Pennington, who represented Regency on Brighton and Hove City Council, has shared one example on a local e-democracy forum.
He posted the joke report after some users failed to spot that an earlier post was a spoof saying that looting had spread to Brighton. It was a video clip of a seagull “stealing” from a shop.
Mr Pennington’s upload – in the name of Reggie Smashem and Jilly Dustup – said: “Parliament are meeting today to discuss an EU Directive to force all shop keepers to fit safety glass to shop windows. This is due to concerns that looters may be injured.
“A parliamentary spokesmen has said: ‘Shopkeepers failing to meet the new requirements will be fined heavily and possibly forced to close their businesses.’
“As a result InjuryLawyers4You have launched an advertising campaign asking looters to get in touch if they have been injured whilst looting.
“Environmental groups have expressed concerns that looters have not been using biodegradable carrier bags to take home their loot.
“Safety groups have noticed that many looters riding bicycles were not wearing helmets. A Police spokesman replied that officers have been instructed to stop any looting youngsters seen riding on the pavement and issue fines. Schools will be organising cycling proficiency courses.
“Some groups of looters have been reported holding peaceful protest meetings as they do not agree that shops should shut earlier than normal.
“A car that was trashed by looters and burnt out had been left parked the following day on double yellow lines. A parking warden wanted to attach a parking penalty notice to the windscreen but as there was no windscreen he was unable to issue the fine.
“Volunteer groups who turned up to help clear up the looters mess have been told to go home by local council officials due to health and safety concerns. Council officials said they could help if they had appropriate safety equipment and was able to provide certificated evidence of training. Officials of the Union for Council Cleaning Services have objected to any help from volunteers as this is seen as devaluing the skills of their workers.
“The TV Licensing Authority have said that any looters seen carrying a stolen television ‘will require a TV licence’ and that they will track and fine anyone using a television without a licence.
“Many police have reported that the frontline riot duty has made a welcome change from completing paperwork. However, senior police officials are warning that all leave for the next 10 years will be cancelled so officers will be able to complete all the paperwork required following the 4 days of rioting.”
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