After Martyn’s death, Figen made the assumption that venues would have much stricter security measures. When she visited a local theatre to attend a music concert 18 months after the attack, she realised to her horror that no security seemed to be in place, and she felt devastated. She spent the next few weeks racking her brains about what she could do, researched security at public venues and realised that no legislation existed to keep the public safe. Shortly afterwards she decided to launch a government petition called Martyn’s Law.
She has overcome her fear of being in the limelight, and now quite confidently talks about the ins and outs of Martyn's Law on national television, radio and other news channels.
With the enormous help and support of Brendan Cox, founder of Survivors Against Terror, and Nick Aldworth, former Chief Superintendent for Metropolitan Police, she is in regular discussion with the government who are now working on the finer details of Martyn's Law, which is in the process of becoming legislation.
Martyn's Law is asking for venues to provide staff with freely available counter-terrorism training, carry out risk assessments inside and outside of their premises, mitigate any risks identified during this process and have a counter-terrorism action plan. In addition, the proposed legislation asks for local authorities to be prepared for an attack.
It is incredible that these requirements are not already in place. During Figen's initial research period, she found it shocking that there is a legal requirement for a certain amount of toilets that are required by venues depending on their capacity, that there are rules about temperature of food being served, yet nothing about actually keeping people safe from attacks.
Whilst Martyn's Law can not stop all terrorist attacks, it will significantly reduce opportunities or deter terrorists to target certain areas where people congregate. Its aim is not to restrict people’s free movement but merely seeks to ensure that venues do all they can to make sure that their customers are safe from these dangers.
To read Figen's full proposal for Martyn's Law, click below.
"Figen Murray experienced something that no parent should ever have to experience. Refusing to be consumed by anger towards her son’s murderers, Figen has committed herself to making society a better place and helping people understand that peace, love and tolerance are the things that define and unite us.
Her courageous public campaigning for better security in the UK will undoubtedly lead to a change of legislation and Martyn’s Law."
Retired Chief Superintendent, Metropolitan Police