Emma Carr is Deputy Director of Big Brother Watch. Follow Emma on Twitter.
Over the last few decades a worrying trend has emerged in Parliament: knee-jerk reactions to a problem, followed by ill thought-out legislation which is open to abuse and overzealous use by public officials.
Big Brother Watch has long warned against the risk of police powers being used far beyond how Parliament intended, and in situations where there is no real cause for suspicion. Stop and search powers have been one of the starkest examples of how things can get out of control.
Under the last Government, stop and search spiralled out of control, with hundreds of thousands of innocent people stopped and searched without any good reason. The Home Secretary should be applauded for reining in the use of these powers to both respect people’s liberties and ensure the police focus their resources on where there is suspicion of wrongdoing.