With criminals in their ranks, confidence in London’s police force sinks | police news

London, United Kingdom – Can London’s police force regain public trust?

The Metropolitan Police Force Commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, is certainly hoping that it can.

Many would say it is an almost insurmountable task. But the alternative is unimaginable.

This force is the first harbor for law enforcement and crime prevention in the UK capital – with its own responsibilities and challenges.

But a series of revelations about criminals in its ranks has severely damaged its reputation and called attention to its staggering failures of accountability.

The case of serial rapist and former Met . police officer David Carrick highlights the extent to which the system is failing to address the very serious issues of ill-treatment of women, corruption and police behavior in the force.

Carrick committed dozens of rapes and sexual assaults on 12 women over the course of two decades, but despite repeated warnings about his behavior, the force’s testing and misconduct This amount has proven to be inadequate.

The same can be said about Wayne Couzenspolice officers kidnapped, raped and murdered Sarah Everard when she was walking home.

He was also investigated for alleged indecent exposure six years ago while working for the Civil Nuclear Constabulary, but no further action was taken and he was able to continue as an officer. He joined the Met Police and went on to work for the Department of Diplomatic and Parliamentary Protection.

‘The police discriminate against women and gender’

Confidence in the London police force is at a low level historical low.

“It’s awful and pervasive,” said Harriet Wistrich, an attorney and co-founder of the Center for Women’s Justice.

“Mt said they are looking into about 800 to 1,000 officers who have charges filed against them for domestic abuse and sexual misconduct.”

But these complaints are not new; For years, this force has been accused of being filled with the worst forms of racism and misogyny.

Rahila Gupta of Southall Black Sisters, a human rights organization that advocates for Asian, African and Caribbean women who are victims of domestic violence, said: “The experience of Black women and the police force has had much older than a few years ago.

“I think recently, white women have come to realize the fact that police are sexist and female,” says Gupta.

“I don’t know why it took so long because we’ve had that experience from the beginning and as a domestic violence agency it’s always been very difficult for us to make that leap. Ask the police for help because we know how they treat the men in our community and how they behave when they experience a domestic violence incident.
Sapah Jama believes police were skeptical of her domestic abuse allegations [Screengrab/Al Jazeera]

Sapah Jama is one such woman who sought help from the Southall Black Sisters for her plight.

A British citizen of Somali descent, she was repeatedly raped and abused by her uncle.

When she finally plucked up the courage to call the police, she said, the answer was skepticism.

“I want them to see the new marks on my body, I told her [the police officer]’This is the last thing he did to me, he burned my back, I want you to know what he did to me’,” she pleaded with the officer.

“She said, ‘How do I know he did that?’. It’s very sad for me, it shatters my fantasies about the police.”

Sapah broke down when she recounted an experience she said she was forced to do in an empty area at the police station. At no point was she given a private space to report very sensitive details of the abuse she endured, Sapah said.

What hurt her more was that the policeman she went to see was an Asian woman.

Instead of being knowledgeable and sensitive, she is faced with suspicion and skepticism.

‘We have lost faith’

In addition, refugee and migrant women who experience domestic abuse often find themselves trapped. Some say the police will first look at their immigration status before dealing with their abuser, if any.

They could find themselves arrested for violating immigration regulations if their documents are not up to date.

“We need them for protection,” said Gupta, “[but] We have lost faith in them because of the ways they treat women in a disparaging, misogynistic and racist way. That’s really a problem because women then don’t want to call them when they need to.”

A series of current failures and revelations of corruption have forced the Met to confront its own legacy.

The Met Commissioner has launched a two-year “Plan for Change” to revise standards and an investigation has been set up to look into failures in the force.

Women’s organizations say Lots of things to do to clean up the Met’s culture of impunity and properly deal with officers who commit offenses.

“We think there should be a separate police force and there should automatically be reciprocal arrangements with neighboring forces when allegations like this are brought,” Wistrich said, “and there needs to be much better protection for whistleblowers.”

In the UK, policymaking is done with public consent – ​​and trust.

However, that trust has been lacking, especially by the most vulnerable in society.

It will also take a tremendous amount of effort and a serious fix during its testing, to reassure everyone that it is a force to be reckoned with.


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