Many people are arrested and detained, but have no independent evidence upon which to rely when they wish to complain about police brutality or malpractice. That is why so many complaints to the Independent Police Complaints Commission are not upheld. At the end of the day it comes down to the word of the police against their word.
If the police acted honestly and professionally it may be OK but the experience of so many is that they don't. The police work together, they write up their notes together and they cover each other's backs, especially when they have been violent or are seeking to achieve a charge.
What they do at the time of the arrest, what happens in the police van, what they do to you in the police yard, how they treat you in the custody suite, what goes on in the cell, all When No-one's Watching is down to them. No video is running, no independent monitor is appointed and no recording equipment is being used. You are alone and defenceless and at their mercy.
An innocent person can suddenly find themselves being beaten up, abused and treated worse than an animal for 24 hours and then be released without charge and this is in Great Britain in 2010.
When No-one's Watching is a new campaigning group to gather together people's stories of police abuse so that we can campaign for reform of the arrest and detention procedures.
It is also to help those on remand or in prison who have had their liberty removed, whether innocent or guilty. How they are treated, what real chance they have to complain and how it is possible for them to stay safe When No-One is Watching is our concern.
Too many deaths, injuries, incidents of bullying, intimidation and suicides occur for any civilised society to be complacent. With overcrowding and inhuman conditions blighting much of the prison network these problems are even more acute.
When No-One is Watching is also here to help those facing investigation by the Social Services, Expert Witnesses, Guardian ad Litem's or other Statutory officials or bodies to know their rights and become empowered to protect themselves, their children and their families.
Our civil liberties have never been so much under threat. The introduction of a 42-day detention without trial, Jacqui Smith's plans to track all our phonecalls, emails and internet use on a superdatabase available to the police and the storage by the police of the DNA samples of hundreds of thousands of innocent people are all frightening encroachments by the state.
This is your chance to work for change. When No-one's Watching aims to ensure that all those who are arrested and detained are treated properly and with dignity. They are innocent until proved guilty.