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The legalities of Street Performance

Harassment and assaults of disabled street performers by private security and police

Under the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 harassment of a disabled street performer is described in law as


If a person subjects a disabled person to harassment where, for a reason which relates to the disabled person’s disability, he engages in unwanted conduct which has the purpose or effect of—

(a)violating the disabled person’s dignity, or

(b)creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for him.

(2)Conduct shall be regarded as having the effect referred to only if, having regard to all the circumstances, including in particular the perception of the disabled person, it should reasonably be considered as having that effect.]]

This means if you feel you are being harassed or verbally assaulted, then according to the DDA95, you are.


As a disabled or street performer if you are approached by anybody representing any enforcement agent such as a private security person or police officer, hand them a copy of the letter here……….Click here

Private security have no right make you feel harassed so ask them to go away or you will call the police. If they persist then tell them you consider what they are doing is an assault and call the police.


You may busk in the UK, but you may not:


Cause a nuisance or block or impede the highway or footpath


If you are accused of causing a nuisance this has to be proved, just because someone says something is a nuisance doesn’t mean it is, only a court can decide.

Rule of thumb is: If you use an amplifier then you are going to be accused of causing a nuisance. The choice is yours. On average if you perform no more than 10db above background level at 50 feet you should be OK.

The law allows 10db above background inside the complainants location.

Download a free db app get a friend to stand 50 feet away and take an average of your levels, then you will know how loud you are.


If you falsely claim to be disabled to a police officer you could end up in real trouble.


Regardless of what you are told by private security personnel they have absolutely no powers beyond those you and I have. They can only ask you to do something but cannot force you to do anything if you feel it relates to your disability.

If you truly believe this in anyway relates to your disability you have every right to ask them to leave you alone or you will call the police and report them for assault and harassment. The crime of assault can be verbal.


Every public authority is being informed of this website and asked if they would like to contribute, so all the private security personnel employed by public authorities should have been properly trained in how to approach a disabled street performer in line with the Disability Discrimination Act 1995.


Make sure you always film every interaction with any private security and police.

As a disabled performer I have had over 20 interactions with private security personnel employed by public authorities and in every case the security personnel ether lied to me harassed me assaulted me while in my wheelchair or just told me, what they were told by the public authority that employs them. What they were told was always wrong. I have never had a single interaction with any private security persons where they told the truth.


I always have 2 camera phones filming all the time as experience has shown that private security personnel brake the law all the time. I have video of The Bankside Wardens in London stopping me from performing and telling me it was illegal for buskers to use a card reader, then as a street performer I could not put up any signs. Both completely untrue, they lied but I filmed it all so I can sue if I need to. One private security person in London telling me he new more about the law than I did, he again lied. Another telling me I cannot film, again just plain lies over and over again. So film everything all the time.

Send me copies so we have clear evidence for the courts.

No disabled performer should ever have to face the abuse I have in the last few years in London by private security people. 

None have proper training in how to deal with disabled performers and perhaps after a few prosecutions things will change.

Legal disclaimer

I am not a lawyer but have sort advice. Before any action is taken by yourself please get the advice of a lawyer beforehand. 

The advice on this site relates to and is for disabled performers as described in the Disability Discrimination Act 1995     Click Here...................

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