Racism in Met Police (1)

Meeting: 
MQT on 2014-03-19
Session date: 
March 19, 2014
Reference: 
2014/1614
Question By: 
Navin Shah
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Baroness Doreen Lawrence has alleged that a section of the police is still racist and stop and search measures continue to be unfair. What is your view on this?

Answer

Answer for Racism in Met Police (1)

Answer for Racism in Met Police (1)

Answered By: 
The Mayor

The Commissioner's "Stop-It" initiative has seen not only a fall in the number of stops and searches, but also a reduction in the disproportionality ratio in searches conducted on white and BME Londoners and there are also more positive outcomes from those stops.  Data from February 2014 shows the arrest rates for all stop and search encounters has increased to 17.1% compared to 13.3% in February 2013 and that this arrest rate has increased across all ethnic groups.  The percentage of black people who were stopped and searched and then subsequently arrested increased to 18.2% from 14.4% and white people rising to 16.7% from 13.2%.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission publication "Stop and Think Again" (May 2013) reported positive developments with regard to MPS use of Stop and Search.  These included confirmation of the reduction in race disproportionality in the use of Stop and Search.

Transparency and accountability is important for all aspects of policing and particularly for more intrusive methods such as stop and search.  That is why MOPAC continues to provide support to the borough community-led stop and search monitoring groups and has worked closely with the MPS and community members to develop data at force and borough level, which is updated monthly and available on the MPS website and is available here:  http://www.met.police.uk/foi/units/stop_and_search.htm

The MPS is also investing in training to ensure officers have the skills and expertise to use their powers to the most effect.

While there is of course more work to be done, the improvement of stop and search figures and the ongoing officer recruitment campaign which is seeking to appeal to BAME communities are cause for optimistic about future relations between the MPS and London's diverse communities.