'Derby City Council need to give police more power now to solve Black Mamba crisis'

This post first appeared on Derby Telegraph. Read the original article.

A councillor has urged Derby City Council to grant the police powers to solve the Black Mamba crisis in the city.

Derbyshire police want to use new orders which would ban people drug taking, dealing and causing anti-social behaviour and have asked the council to grant them permission.

The orders have been used in other parts of the county and have been deemed a success.

The council has previously said it will begin a public consultation on the use of the orders which will begin in the autumn. Mick Barker, city councillor for Oakwood, spoke to the Derby Telegraph after raising the issue at a meeting of city councillors on Wednesday night.

Paramedics treating a man thought to be under the influence of Black Mamba in Derby city centre

Paramedics treating a man thought to be under the influence of Black Mamba in Derby city centre

He said: "I have studied the act and it doesn't say anywhere that public consultation is needed. This act has been in place since 2014 and being used by other council's up and down the country for years. And this problem has been in Derby for a long time. The fact public consultation has not even started is ridiclious.

"More than 100 businesses have written to them asking to get it in place - how much public consultation do they need? I would say that's consultation with the public. Whenever there is a challenge there does seem to be a pattern that they say they cannot do it because of these reasons. The attitude needs to change that it can be done.

"There's clear evidence that there's a problem with drug dealing and taking in the city centre. We've all seen it for ourselves and we've all seen the shocking videos and photos. That in itself is proof enough."

Mick Barker

Mick Barker

The council has previously said that it was "reviewing a range of information and intelligence in order to identify appropriate prohibitions" that can be included in the consultation.

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Derby's problems with Black Mamba

Mr Barker said the problem was happening yards from the Council House in the city centre.

At the same meeting city councillor Alan Grimadell, and chairman of Derby Civic Society - an organisation which advises the council on improvements it thinks can be made - also spoke on the issue. He described the state of the city centre as a "disgrace" and said the situation was "totally unacceptable".

Mark Rawson, the deputy leader of the authority, said he "does not agree with the analysis". He said other towns and cities were experiencing similar problems.

He said: "Our Government needs to look at drug and alcohol problems and mental health issues."

Derbyshire police say dealing with the anti-social behaviour in the city centre is a priority. They have installed a mobile police station in St Peter's Street which will remain there for at least another ten weeks.