Mayor and Commissioner united in driving out racism in the Met Police

31 May 2012

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson has ordered a progress review of key recommendations in the Race and Faith Inquiry report he commissioned to address racism in the Metropolitan Police force. The Mayor will today reiterate his commitment to driving out racism in the Met at the Assembly’s Police and Crime Committee (PCC) at City Hall.

The Mayor will be joined at the PCC by the Met Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe who is implementing a wide internal ‘culture change’ within the Met, starting with a ‘health check’ of the Met’s equality policies, reviewing stop and search procedures, and following the recommendations of the Mayor’s Race and Faith Inquiry, ensuring that Deputy Commissioner, Craig Mackey, prioritises equality across all levels of the police, and be held accountable for performance.

The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime will conduct a robust review of progress on the recommendations and report back to the Mayor in the autumn. It was one of the Mayor’s first actions as Chair of the MPA to launch the independent Race and Faith Inquiry to reinforce and strengthen the underlying positive values and behaviours of the Met, and embed a new culture which allows staff and the organisation as a whole to learn from mistakes and avoid them in the future.

Key recommendations from the Race and Faith Inquiry, intended to address racism concerns and re-focus the Met’s approach on equality as a priority throughout the organisation, included:

· Multi-point entry to open up the senior levels of the Met to people of different backgrounds, cultures, races, faiths and life experiences, who will no longer have to automatically start at the bottom and work upwards. As a result of the Mayor’s lobbying the Winsor Review of police terms and conditions has adopted this approach and the Government is now in the process of negotiating entry at Inspector and Superintendent level across the country from next year. Pushing for multi-point entry was a Mayoral manifesto commitment.

· Making it easier for all staff to apply for internal promotions, transfers and training opportunities. Removing this restriction has increased opportunities for individuals, improving morale and widening the pool of candidates.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson said: “We are putting more police on the street and driving down crime but more needs to be done to build Londoners’ trust and confidence in their police force. A crucial part of this is making our force more representative, so it can build better relations with the communities it serves, and while I am encouraged that the number of officers from ethnic minority backgrounds continues to grow, we need to build momentum. The Commissioner and I are in absolute agreement that racism within the Met, whose officers and staff are in a special position of trust, will not be tolerated. We are committed to driving forward the changes needed to ensure the Met provides an excellent level of service to the entire community.”

Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service, Bernard Hogan-Howe said: “We welcome this review and the Mayor’s support for lateral entry and the related Winsor recommendations. It is vital that the MPS represents Londoners at all levels. I have made it clear that I will not tolerate racism within the MPS and we will deal with it robustly wherever it occurs.”

Notes to editors

1. The Mayor commissioned the Metropolitan Police Authority’s Race and Faith Inquiry in 2008 to address racism in the Metropolitan Police force. The final report was published in July 2010 (to view visit here http://www.mpa.gov.uk/downloads/publications/race-faith-inquiry.pdf).

2. All of the recommendations made were accepted and progress has been reported to the MPA and now to the MOPC. As a result there is now:

· A good working relationship with the Met BPA

· The Diversity and Citizen Focus Directorate reports into the Deputy Commissioner, who is the lead for Equality and Diversity in the MPS

· The Diversity Executive Board provides a clear platform to drive through change; and

· Programmes in place to provide support for BME officers seeking promotion which have already seen significant success.

3. Through commissioning the Inquiry the Mayor, and now the progress review, the Mayor wants to see a police service that looks more like London, which will be greatly helped by multi-point entry.

The picture is already changing.

· There are now more police officers from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities than ever before. Numbers have increased from 8.3 percent in May 2008 to 10.1 percent in April 2012.

· Nearly 35 percent of PCSOs, 28 percent of Specials and 24 percent of other police staff are from BME communities.

· The Met now has the most senior female BME officer in DAC Patricia Gallan and three BME Commanders.

4. Multi-point entry is about looking for individuals of high ability and capacity who have been assessed as having the potential to be senior officers drawn from a variety of backgrounds and expertise and is not focused around education.