London Scraps 'Racist' Live Music Regulation That Critics Said Targeted Grime and R&B Artists
publish date: 2017-11-10
Earlier this year, London mayor Sadiq Khan called for a review of Form 696 in response to repeated concerns from promoters and artists.
“There is no doubt that over the last decade a number of serious incidents have been prevented through the effective exchange of information, advice and intelligence between the Met, promoters and venue managers as part of this process,” said a statement from the Metropolitan Police announcing that, after a review with stakeholders and representatives from across London’s live music industry, Form 696 was finally being scrapped.
In its place, Met Police will “develop a new voluntary partnership approach for venues and promoters across London,” said superintendent Roy Smith.
“This decision will help London’s night-time economy thrive, ensure the capital is a welcoming place for artists and DJs of all music genres and that Londoners are able to enjoy live music safely,” said Khan.
News that Form 696 was being abolished was also welcomed by British trade bodies the Musicians Union and umbrella organization UK Music.
“It’s great that Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and London’s Night Czar Amy Lamé have listened to the concerns of the music industry," stated UK Music CEO Michael Dugher, who said the development would help ensure that “London remains a world beater when it comes to our cultural music mix.”
Earlier this year, New York City lawmakers repealed the so-called Cabaret Law, which had also been accused of racial discrimination. First enacted in 1926, the anti-dancing law originated as an attempt to police Harlem's 1920s jazz clubs and continued to be enforced unfairly, critics argued.