Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Fri Mar 24, 2023 10:25 pm

Unless something disastrous happens I should be going on holiday on Monday for a week so I won't be reading any more chapters until I get back. I will finish the report, I promise, just give me time :)
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by jimbob » Sat Mar 25, 2023 12:29 am

Fishnut wrote:
Fri Mar 24, 2023 10:25 pm
Unless something disastrous happens I should be going on holiday on Monday for a week so I won't be reading any more chapters until I get back. I will finish the report, I promise, just give me time :)
It's so hard to not just quote every page

Anyway, enjoy your holiday
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Boustrophedon » Sat Mar 25, 2023 11:39 am

Thank you Fishnut for the effort you have put in on this.

And another one, child sexual abuse this time. The vetting procedure obviously failed here.
The only positive side that I can see to this story is that he has been caught relatively young before he can ruin too many other young lives. He was not caught because of the actions of the police but because the child's parents reported him.

Met police Safer Schools officer jailed over child sexual abuse
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by jimbob » Wed Mar 29, 2023 5:10 pm

Not the Met, but systematic cooking of the books

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland- ... l-65086107
One of Scotland's main police control rooms used a fake system to manipulate response time targets for eight years, according to documents seen by the BBC.

Thousands of calls to the Bilston Glen control room were allocated to a fictitious call sign known as DUMY.

Internal systems would register that the calls had been passed to officers - but instead they were parked on a list.

This meant a police vehicle would not have been dispatched quickly to calls which had been judged as high priority.

It appears that many calls were not attended at all.

The practice, according to official police documents, was designed to "provide artificial levels of incident management performance".
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Sun Apr 09, 2023 7:46 pm

Chapter 8: Governance, scrutiny and accountability
This is the first section of the report I've found a bit hard to follow, and I think that's reflective of the confusing way that the Met is held to account (or not).

There's three different people/organisations who have ultimate oversight of each police force:
- the Chief Constable
- the Home Secretary (and by extension, the Home Office)
- the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC)

For the Met these roles are held by:
- the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (aka the Commissioner)
- the Home Secretary
- the Mayor of London (and by extension the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime: MOPAC)

The Commissioner is the most senior police officer in the country and is appointed by the Monarch (recommended by the Home Secretary, in consultation with the Mayor). In contrast, in other police forces it's the PCC who selects the Chief Constable. The fact the Commissioner is appointed by the Monarch is one of the many ways it seems the Met is made to feel different from, and superior to other police forces.

The Policing Protocol Order 2011, the order that among other things introduced PCCs,
...signalled a significant shift in the Home Office’s role in policing, from one of ‘hands on’ to ‘hands off’, in line with the 2010 Coalition Government’s policy of ‘localism’. [p219]
The Home Secretary retained 'backstop powers' [p219] to intervene but,
The conditions that might trigger such Home Office intervention are, however, subjective, and create room for ambiguity. [p219]
The report has an interesting discussion on the concept of 'operational independence', quoting a Review written by Lord Patten in 1999 on Policing in Northern Ireland. In it he questioned the use of the term, preferring 'operational responsibility' as it reflected the need for police to have oversight and scrutiny, but need to have the ability to take operational decisions and not be influenced by non-operational matters when deciding, for example, who to arrest. In other words, the police shouldn't be told by politicians (or others) who to arrest, but their decisions on who they arrest should be able to be questioned.

The MOPAC seems to be the source of the main day-to-day external oversight the Met receives. You will be shocked to learn that,
During the Review, officers and staff both from the Met and MOPAC expressed some frustrations that indicated a relationship which, at times, was dysfunctional. At times, the Met was described as being defensive or evasive, while MOPAC was sometimes criticised for a lack of a systematic approach to supporting and challenging the delivery of agreed aims, objectives, or outcomes.

We heard that the Met had frequently invoked the concept of operational independence, at times to deter further scrutiny...

Although the handling of the relationship is not the responsibility of the Met alone, we do find that aspects of Met culture, such as a tendency towards obfuscation and defensiveness, can limit the benefits of being scrutinised and having external oversight. Historically, the Met have made it very hard for MOPAC to scrutinise them. [p220]
There are additional eternal bodies providing inspection, audit, investigation and advice functions.

His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS)
The report discusses how comparisons are often made between the HMICFRS and bodies such as Ofsted, but it makes it clear these comparisons are not valid. Ofsted inspects governing bodies, and has the power to close services and put others in charge if organisations are failing. All HMICFRS can do is publish its reports and hope they can shame the Met into '[raising] their game' [p221]. It has no ability to enforce change.
In HMICFRS Inspection reports we reviewed, recommendations were made repeatedly and were not acted on.[p222]
The report then gives a list of examples of recommendations not acted on, including,
The Met were unable to state with any certainty who each phone or tablet owned by the force is allocated to [p223]
The other examples - evidence management being sh.t and not requiring officers to disclose associations with journalists - didn't really surprise me but not even knowing who has which phone is such a failure of basic asset management it left me slack-jawed in horror.

Directorate of Audit, Risk and Assurance (DARA)
This is a unit of the MOPAC, and act as the 'internal audit' for the Met [p223].
Risk audits carried out by DARA have regularly shown up problems which are not acted on and which are subsequently criticised in HMICFRS reports. Yet DARA is viewed as an external body by the Met, and handled as a process to get through, rather than as an assurance function that can be used to drive improvement. We were told that DARA’s assessments are given a very cool reception where issues are raised, and the Met doesn’t engage positively and welcome challenge.

Although audits may result in four possible grades, all Met audits are graded either ‘adequate’ or ‘limited assurance’. Between 2018-19 and 2020-21 no reviews of the Met achieved a ‘substantial assurance’ rating. In the same time period, there was no year in which the reviews receiving ‘adequate’ ratings or above exceeded 79%. In discussions during the Review, it was evident that the Met regarded DARA’s audit standards as unrealistic, and that Met staff and officers ‘push back’ against recommendations, rather than welcome the assurance they can provide. [p223, my emphasis]
Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC)
This replaced the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) in 2018. It seems they are widely hated by officers in the Met, being seen as 'a critic with a political agenda' [p225] yet there are officers 'who felt that they could trust the IOPC more than they could the Met’s own misconduct system' [p225]. I think we can probably work out which type of officer falls into which camp.
The IOPC role does provide some additional assurance for the public. But the length of time investigations of serious incidents take, and the absence of comment from the IOPC or the Met during such periods, increases fatigue and cynicism, which undermines public and officer confidence in the system. [p225]
National Police Chiefs’ Council and the College of Policing
There are also a range of external bodies, of which these are the biggest, and 'provide support and guidance' [p225] to improve policing.
The Met makes extensive use of the formal procedural advice and guidance from the College of Policing. In terms of good practice guidance, however, there has been a historical tendency on the part of the Met to see products from other bodies as inferior, ‘not invented here’, or not suited to the uniqueness of policing in the capital. This means that the Met has not always co-operated with national projects to address policing issues and look for solutions. The Met should be more open to good practice from other sources and contribute more to its development. [p225]
The report concludes,
it is clear that, although MOPAC, HMICFRS and the IOPC are able to provide some scrutiny, inspection and investigation, they do not currently have the levers required to create the types of changes that other parts of the public sector have in their arrangements. [p226]
Transparency
The report uses the following definition of transparency,
how communities, their MPs, and local authorities can, through processes such as inquests and public inquiries, be informed about what the police are doing and why. [p226]
It then uses a series of case studies to show how the Met lacks transparency, to MPs, local authorities, in inquests, legally and in reports and reviews. One thing that comes through in the examples is not just how the Met is extremely reticent about giving any information to outsiders, but how it is incapable of holding its officers to account. Officers are referred for 'reflective practice' rather than misconduct action wherever possible.

One case study is that of the death in custody of Ian Taylor, who died after telling police he needed an inhaler for his asthma and was not only denied timely medical care but accused of playing up his medical condition. The coroner said he would issue a Prevention of Future Deaths report in part because of the response of the officer during the inquest,
...the officer did not accept that he had learnt anything from the incident or that he would do anything differently in the future, and did not apologise to the family when given an opportunity to make any other comment.

In his report, the Coroner asked the IOPC to re-consider the officer’s conduct at the scene and his attitude at the inquest, and for the Met to consider his supervision and further training needs. [p229]
The Met concluded at although 'the officer’s comments demonstrated a lack of professionalism, were a breach of the code of ethics, and had caused distress to Mr Taylor’s family' [p229-230] they 'did not meet the threshold for misconduct proceedings' [p230]. It once again has me asking what an officer has to do in order to be referred to misconduct proceedings, the threshold seems to be so high.

How the Met responds to external scrutiny
The report explains that with all these external bodies providing oversight, recommendations and support, and given the Met is a public body operating with the consent of Londoners, reviews and investigations should be met with 'a spirit of openness and transparency' [p232] but concludes 'This is not the case.' [p232]
Typically, when a high-profile inspection or inquiry reports, the Met will set up an ‘Operation’ with a ‘Gold Group’ to respond. This Group carries out focused activity on a particular issue in the short term, but the model does not lend itself to embedding learning throughout the organisation and making the change needed...

The Met doesn’t open its doors to alternative views, or to challenge. This is both short-sighted and undermines policing by consent. [p232-233]
Conclusion
The oversight the Met receives lacks 'the levers to force improvement' [p233] and the perception that it is 'too big to fail' [p23] means that many in positions to challenge it shy away from doing so.
The Met itself sees scrutiny as an intrusion. This is both short-sighted and unethical...

A cultural shift is required for the Met to become a reflective and learning organisation which opens its doors and invites criticism, examination, challenge and assurance...

With a need for wholesale enduring reform and improvement of the Met, the time is right for the Commissioner and his senior colleagues to shine the light of common sense through the governance and accountability fog, and put the interests of the public first, recognising the Mayor’s electoral mandate and role in holding the Met to account for Londoners. The Commissioner should not seek to do this alone or only from within the Met. [p233-234]
It seems to me that that, on paper the Met has so much oversight that a risk could easily be conflicting recommendations. But the reality is that these bodies are making broadly the same recommendations but lack the ability to force the Met to implement them. The current system feels like an enormous waste of everyone's time and an insult to those who work for these organisations. The Met is so sure it's right that it refuses to see that improvements are always possible. Its arrogance is palpable and it's clear that Casey thinks it's time it was brought down a peg or two. Whether she succeeds or not remains to be seen.
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Sun Apr 09, 2023 8:53 pm

Chapter 9: Discrimination
This chapter is by far the largest - taking almost 100 pages in the 363 page report. It is broken down into sub-chapters and I'm going to tackle each one in it's own post as I think I'll likely exceed the character limit otherwise.

Each chapter has a summary and I've not quoted from these yet as I'm hoping they're superfluous given the summarising I'm doing. But I think this summary is worth quoting from.
We have identified institutional homophobia, misogyny and racism, and other forms of discrimination in the Met. But the Met has only reluctantly accepted discrimination and has preferred to put this down to a minority of ‘bad apples.’[p235]
Introduction
The chapter begins by noting there's a long history of accusations about institutional homophobia, institutional misogyny and institutional racism in the Met, and these accusations have increased in recent years (I'd guess as a result of people feeling more capable of speaking out rather than cases increasing, but who really knows).
For the Met, tackling discrimination is both a legal imperative, since it is an organisation that seeks to uphold the law regarding equality, and a functional imperative, to promote effective policing and provide a good service to all Londoners. [p235]
The report notes that to effectively police by consent in a diverse city like London, you need to recruit widely and people aren't going to join if they think they'll face discrimination. It then provides an example of how the Met refuses to look past the 'few bad apples' approach to discrimination,
The Met accepts it ‘is not free from racism, discrimination or bias.’ Its public strategy for diversity, the Strategy for Inclusion, Diversity and Engagement (STRIDE) 2021-2025 states:
Grave concern exists in relation to the behaviours and standards of a very small minority of colleagues who have not demonstrated the values of compassion, integrity, courage and professionalism to the level that befits a member of the Met.
[p236]
The report aims to 'explores the reality inside the organisation' [p236] and examines its 'policies, systems and data' [p236] as well as the culture and lived experiences of those who have been impacted by that culture.

The report commissioned a survey of Met officers and staff, and of Londoners. They were asked if they felt the Met treated all Londoners fairly. Unsurprisingly, only 25% of Londoners felt they did. Rather more surprisingly, only 60% of officers and staff did. While still significantly higher than the public view, it's telling that 40% of Met employees feel they don't treat people fairly. These percentages also hide ethnic disparities. Only 22% of Black Met respondents and 26% of Asian Met respondents agreed that all Londoners are treated fairly. In contrast 65% of White Met respondents agreed.

While the report recognises and uses information gathered by previous researchers, they also gathered their own data 'through discussion groups, interviews, listening exercises and our own survey of almost 7,000 staff and officers.' [p237]
We have found a culture of discrimination that takes many forms in the Met but is felt most acutely by those who cannot hide their differences from the White male norm, particularly people of colour and women. We have found racism, misogyny and homophobia in plain sight...

Those who do not conform to the prevailing culture face discrimination, bullying and barriers to thriving and progressing in their careers. Those who try to conform teeter on a knife edge in the organisation. If they speak out, they will be labelled as a ‘trouble-maker’. They are incentivised to hide things about themselves which would bring them into conflict with the prevailing culture. But even if they walk that line effectively, the organisation may still decide that their ‘face doesn’t fit’.

The Review does not agree with the Met’s current STRIDE strategy that discrimination in the organisation is down to a ‘very small minority of individuals’
...

The organisation as a whole, especially through its leadership, its management tiers, its policies, systems and practices, allows, or causes, discrimination and abuse to occur and recur. As a result, the integrity of the whole organisation is degraded and public trust is eroded. [p238, my emphasis]
Bullying
Bullying is probably the most blatant form of discrimination by individuals. Yet despite the Met being 'a service where integrity, respect and impartiality are founding principles' [p238] the report was presented with multiple examples of 'supervisors and senior officers looking the other way, ignoring their management responsibilities, and actively engaging in discrimination' [p238].
The Review has found systemic and institutional bias in the misconduct system. [p239, my emphasis]
In contrast with other organisations such as the NHS and the Civil service, the annual staff survey doesn't ask about bullying and harassment. The Review conducted its own survey and 'found a wide picture of bullying' [p239] with 22% of respondents having personal experiences. It is more pronounced for those with protected characteristics. Personal experience of bullying was reported by:
- 36% of Asian respondents
- 35% of black respondents
- 33% of people with a long-standing illness, disability or infirmity
- 25% of women
- 30% of LGBTQ+ respondents

Examples of bullying include 'pranks' such as,
bags of urine being thrown at cars, male officers flicking each other’s genitals, dildos being put in coffee mugs, lockers being emptied or covered in evidence tape, and an animal put in an officer’s locker. [p240]
I can't express how much I hate 'pranks'. There are genuine pranks which leave both pranker and prankee laughing but these are few and far between. What we see far more regularly is bullying under the guise of pranks which are then dismissed as 'just a joke' when the bully is called on them. If it's 'just a joke' why isn't everyone laughing?
There is a policy which states that the Met does not tolerate bullying in any form. But like many written policies in the Met, we found it bears little relationship to the lived experience of Met employees.

Official routes are neither trusted nor effective and complaints about bullying are closed down, moved on, and denied.

These forms of personal discrimination are far too present in an organisation that is dealing with members of the public who are made vulnerable by being a victim of crime. [p242, my emphasis]
I'm leaving it there for tonight. I'm... looking forward isn't the right word given what I expect the next 90 or so pages to hold but I think it's going to be informative and damning. It's clear that Casey is firmly of the opinion that there are institutional problems and it's going to be interesting to see her lay out her arguments.
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Wed Apr 12, 2023 4:08 pm

Chapter 9.1: Homophobia
Introduction
The introduction summarises the prevalence of homosexuality in London (around 300,000 people over the age of 16 identify as LGB+) and gives a very brief history of the laws around homosexuality. It's easy to forget how recently being gay was criminalised,
Same-sex relationships between men were partially decriminalised in England and Wales in 1967. But the offence of ‘gross indecency’, and the criminalisation of anal sex, which were both widely used to target and criminalise sexual activity between men for many years, were only repealed in England and Wales by the Sexual Offences Act 2003. [p243]
Given that context, it seems less surprising that institutional homophobia remains - many senior people will have been starting out in the careers before those laws were changed. Though the introduction outlines the ways the Met tries to engage with LGBT+ people within its staff and within the community it services, the following quote makes me suspect that these engagements are not as effective as would be liked,
On the surface then, the Met is a far cry from the police service many people in the LGBT+ community experienced in the twentieth century. [p244]
LGBTQ+ officers and staff: the view from the inside
The Met doesn't collect sexuality information about its staff, so it's impossible to determine whether it reflects the demographics of the population it serves.
Currently the Met LGBT+ Staff Support Association membership stands at around 500 officers and staff, but we are aware this is a small proportion of the Met’s LGBT+ community. Prior to the creation of the Met LGBT+ Staff Support Association, the Gay Police Association had 2,500+ officers and staff as members, which might be a more accurate reflection. [p244]
I am really surprised at how few are in the LGBT+ Staff Support Association, especially compared to the old one. I wonder what happened to cause it to drop so significantly.
The general absence of data on sexuality in the Met limited the Review’s understanding of how sexuality might affect recruitment, progression, attrition and progression through the ranks, and how conduct issues are tackled. [p244]
To fill in these gaps in data the Review did their own survey.
Our survey found that 3% of all respondents had personally experienced homophobia. 19% of the Lesbian, Gay, or Bisexual respondents surveyed directly experienced homophobia.* Of those, 14% say this happens at least once or twice a week.

We saw further evidence in the response to bullying. A significant minority of LGBTQ+ staff and officers (30%) who responded to our survey have experienced bullying when compared with people overall in the Met (22%) who responded. 35% of LGBT respondents who had experienced bullying said this happened at least once or twice a week. [p244-245]

* This may refer to experiences from working with the public as well as experiences with other Met employees
A couple of things stand out to me. The first is that 22% of the workforce (who responded to the survey) have experienced bullying, or just over 1 in 5 people - that's horrifying! The other is that a significant portion of people being bullied are being regularly bullied. At least once or twice a week is so frequent, I really don't know how you manage to make yourself go to work knowing you're likely going to be bullied during your shift.

We also get another example of how those outside a minority group see things as better for them than those within.
Almost half (45%) of LGBTQ+ respondents thought that LGBTQ+ people are underrepresented in the Met, compared with 18% of heterosexual respondents.

One in four (24%) LGBTQ+ employees surveyed do not think everyone working at the Met is treated fairly regardless of their sexual orientation, compared to 12% of heterosexual respondents.

In our survey of Londoners, a third (35%) of respondents think LGBTQ+ people are underrepresented in the Met. 52% of LGBTQ+ Londoners think there is underrepresentation, compared with 33% of non-LGBTQ+ Londoners. [p255]
The Review also spoke to many LGBTQ+ staff and officers to get a sense of what things were like for them. They found a recognition that 'the organisation’s attitude towards the LGBTQ+ community has improved considerably' [p245] and saw for themselves during Pride month 'the efforts made to celebrate Pride within and without the organisation.' [p245].

However, from these conversations,
There were a number of recurring themes which came from personal accounts of officers and staff, which cause significant concern about the Met’s ability to operate inclusively. [p245]
These include negative comments being published on the intranet,
“There are comments after intranet articles, along the lines of ‘why can’t we just get on with the day job, why do we have to care about bi-sexual people?’” [p246]
There's no indication that these comments are removed or the people writing them face any repercussions for writing them.

We have the dreaded 'banter' making a reappearance,
Officers spoke about a culture where their colleagues would over-sexualise members of the LGBTQ+ community under the guise of ‘banter’...

We heard repeatedly that officers in the Met feel emboldened to ask personal questions about the sex lives of gay and bisexual women that they wouldn’t ask of heterosexual officers and staff. [p246]
The report highlights that these are experiences familiar to other minority groups within the Met and the almost-universal response is to 'keep their heads down and hope it will go away' [p247].

Speaking up
That 'keeping their heads down' is endemic. No-one is willing to speak up to defend LGBTQ+ officers, especially when senior officers are the ones espousing homophobic rhetoric. Rather than address bullying and discrimination, they are circumvented.
Throughout this Review, we have seen that side-stepping issues or passing them on, is very much part of the culture in the Met. A discomfort with challenge makes it easier to sweep the problem under the carpet. [p247]
WhatsApp groups are mentioned again, with one gay officer telling the Review that his supervisor was in a group where he made 'lewd sexualised comments' [p247] and then video-called the officer 'making obscene gestures and asking about his sexual practices' [p247]. He reported this but a familiar story played out - despite evidence the case was 'not proven' for sexual harassment and the officer wasn't even told by the misconduct panel of their decision, he found out through a third party. He was unable to appeal and is 'trapped in his role and has been told he cannot transfer as a direct result of speaking out against wrongdoing.' [p248]

‘LGBT expertise’
Ah, it's the familiar story of underfunded DEI initiatives - minorities are the ones asked to "deliver training, mediation and support" [p248] in a voluntary capacity on top of their normal jobs because why bother paying someone to do it when you can get it done for free?

Again, the Review reflects on how this is not something unique to this one minority group but something that is done to all of them,
This was also a dilemma experienced by Black and other ethnic minority staff, who were asked to help improve the organisation in relation to racial diversity. [p248]
The Met and the LGBTQ+ community: the view from outside
In a rare example of praise for the Met, the Review recognises that it has a LGBT+ Independent Advisory Group (LGBT+ IAG) which was set up in 2000 following the Admiral Duncan pub bombing in 1999.
This is to their credit. The Met is one of very few police services internationally to have an LGBT+ advisory group. [p249]
LGBT Advisers
Liaison officers were also introduced following the bombing, working to 'investigate relevant crime and engage with the community' [p249] and had become 'well established' [p249].

f.ck sake,
Following the BCU reorganisation in 2018, LGBT Liaison Officers largely disappeared from the Met...

Two years later, following a decline in victims’ satisfaction, trust and confidence scores, the Met reintroduced the Liaison Officer role, rebranded as LGBT+ Advisers.

This time round, they are volunteers who undertake their role alongside their full-time job as an officer or police staff member. They must be a member of the Met LGBT+ Staff Support Association, commit to a minimum of two hours per month to carry out the role including engagement work, and attend training every year. [p250, my emphasis]
The Met is very pleased with these LGBT+ Advisors,
However, it is clear that there is a disconnect between the Met’s description of the scheme, the experience of Advisers and the expectations of the community.

LGBT+ Advisers in the Met are volunteers and have said the expectations are not clear and that those who volunteer enthusiastically don’t know how to fulfil the role.

Meanwhile, members of London’s LGBTQ+ community feel misled about Advisers. They feel inaccessible to the community and internally focused. [p250]
The Review notes this is another example of the attitude and approach seen elsewhere - make it look like you're doing something, and don't worry if that something is effective or not.

The murders of Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth and Jack Taylor
I've (too) briefly touched on these murders before - here and here. As I said in the latter post regarding Port's methods,
That's not the [work] of a criminal mastermind, that's someone relying on the fact that the police don't give a sh.t about gay men being murdered.
I don't see anything in this section to make me want to retract that statement. There is an ongoing investigation by the IOPC into some of the officers involved in the initial investigations which means,
...the Review is unable to publicly set out our view on whether homophobia played a role in the investigation itself. [p252]
So they are focusing on how the Met responded to accusations of homophobia and the impact this response has had.

The Met rejected the claims that the officers involved were homophobic, or that the Met is institutionally homophobic, claiming it just messed up,
Former Assistant Commissioner Helen Ball said:
“We don’t see institutional homophobia, we don’t see homophobia on the part of officers. We do see all sorts of errors in the investigations which came together in a truly dreadful way.” [p252]
The Review explains how it would expect any institution 'but especially one which relies upon community trust and public consent' [p252] to be open to interrogating itself and 'assess the role prejudice, including assumptions and misinformed stereotypes, may play internally.'' [p252] It concludes,
An absence of this raises concerns about that institution's ability to tackle homophobia where it exists. [p252]
During the Coroner's Inquest the Met successfully argued that it was outside the Coroner's statutory role to 'elicit a finding of discrimination' so the coroner 'instructed the jury that she had ‘ruled as a matter of law that it was not a matter upon which they may express a view.’' [p252].

Since the inquests the Met has used distorted this to claim that the coroner did not find evidence of homophobia and used it to argue that a public enquiry into institutional homophobia is unnecessary. More recently, they have dismissed calls for an enquiry by arguing that the Casey Review will be looking into institutional homophobia. All of this shows an organisation incapable of self-reflection and lacking a desire to improve itself. The Met is incapable of scrutinising itself and is so terrified of the label of homophobia that is would rather remain homophobic than admit that changes are needed.

Donna Taylor, sister of Jack Taylor, points out what should be - but unfortunately isn't - obvious to the Met,
“Someone needs to take responsibility for homophobia, someone needs to own it...not one person has...you can’t put it right and change it if you don’t know what’s wrong.” [p253, my emphasis]

LGBTQ+ trust and confidence in the Met

The Review starts by providing us with probably the most unsurprising statistics so far;
In recent years then, the relationship between London’s LGBTQ+ community has been significantly damaged. Trust in the Met has fallen significantly amongst the LGBTQ+ community.

The MOPAC Public Attitudes Survey showed that between 2015-16 and 2021-22, the general trust score for LGBT+ respondents fell 20%. For those who do not identify as LGBT+, the fall was 12%. [p254]
The Review's own survey of Londoners 'found that 51% of LGBTQ+ respondents do not have confidence in the Met to treat people fairly and equally.' [p256]

No sh.t,
A point where the majority of a group of people do not have confidence in a public body should serve as a red flag signal that something needs to drastically change. [p256]
The Review notes this fall in trust coincides with the Met's inept handling of the murders of Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth and Jack Taylor and the 'campaigning the families felt they have had to carry out to get justice' [p256].
In July 2022, organisers asked uniformed officers not to march in London’s annual Pride march. This marked a low in relations between the community and the Met. pp256]
Conclusion
The conclusion is damning.
The Met’s failure to collect data about sexuality has made it difficult to identify the true extent to which homophobic discrimination by individual officers is reinforced through Met culture, processes and systems...

The absence of data and information on sexuality is an example of institutional complacency on LGBTQ+ issues. [p257]
It says that the large percentage of employees who have experienced homophobia and homophobic bullying is a 'significant problem' [p257] and 'should be a warning sign that the problem is pervasive throughout the organisation.' [p257]

It notes that the over-sexualisation and prejudice regarding LGBT+ employees,
...has worrying consequences for the assumptions Met officers make about victims of crime and how they police London. [p257]
It ends by calling out the Met's instinctive defensiveness to claims of homophobia,
The Met’s institutional defensiveness and concern to maintain its reputation, and its reluctance to listen to and accept that problems are down to anything other than a procedural mishap or the failings of one or two officers, risks significantly alienating officers, staff and the LGBTQ+ community. This defensiveness is getting in the way of rebuilding trust with the LGBTQ+ community. [p257]
And concludes in the only way it possibly could,
The Review finds the Met to be institutionally homophobic. [p257, my emphasis]
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by jimbob » Wed Apr 12, 2023 4:42 pm

Quoting myself responding to one of your links in the post above
Also don't forget the death if Ian Tomlinson. Again killed by a police officer who never should have passed vetting.

Spoiler:
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Fri Apr 14, 2023 9:14 pm

Chapter 9.2. Sexism and Misogyny
Introduction
The introduction sets the scene by briefly describing a number of recent incidents regarding Met officers abusing their positions of authority to harm women that have brought renewed attention to the misogyny endemic in the Met. The incidents covered are the murder of Sarah Everard, police misconduct during the investigation of the murders of Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman, the conviction of David Carrick, and a case that had somehow passed me by (though jimbob did link to an article).

According to that Guardian article, 'up to 19 officers' from Charing Cross police station were in a WhatsApp group that shared messages, many of which the Independent said were 'too offensive to print in mainstream news coverage'. The Independent noted that 'One officer was referred to as “mcrapey raperson”' and that the conversations were dismissed as 'banter'. 14 officers were investigated but only two were sacked for gross misconduct. Two others had misconduct proven against them, one officer received a written warning and four others 'faced measures to improve their performance' according to the Guardian. The Met denied that misogyny was a factor and did the familiar 'bad apples' line. Yet again, I'm astonished at how few people face any sort of consequence. The IOPC called the behaviour 'disgraceful' yet allowed almost everyone involved to keep their job. These officers made homophobic, misogynistic and racist 'jokes' - how on earth can they think these people should be interacting with the public in positions of authority?!

BTW, I've just seen a link to the 'Learning Report' on this case, termed 'Operation Hotton' which you can find here [PDF]

Anyway, back to the Casey Review...

One thing that's sticking out is that the Review isn't naming David Carrick or Wayne Couzens. It refers to 'a serving police officer [who] was convicted of the rape and torture of 12 women over a 20-year period' [p258] and 'the murderer of Sarah Everard' [p259]. I can't work out why.

The Met's reaction to Sarah's murder is emblematic of the 'Initiative-itis' discussed in Chapter 3,
The sentencing of the murderer of Sarah Everard unleashed a great deal of activity in the Met, brought together in the Rebuilding Trust Programme.150 This combined commitments around ‘raising standards’, ‘improving our culture’ and ‘doing our job well: protecting women and girls’ including an ‘enhanced response to tackling violence against women and girls.’ [p259]

150 Launched October 2021 but since removed from the Met’s website
f.cking hell,
Many officers talked to us about how bad it was in policing twenty or thirty years ago when some female officers were subjected to humiliation upon arrival at a new command in the form of ‘station stamping’. This was the practice of women officers being bent over the front desk, having their skirts lifted up and having the office stamp used on their buttocks or breasts. We understand this practice, thankfully, does not happen now. [p260, my emphasis]
These are officers who would be sent to deal with rapes, domestic violence, sexual assaults, sexual harassment... It just blows my mind that this sort of behaviour was considered acceptable.

Previously, male violence against women was not seen as a crime but as a ‘domestic’, and treated as a 'burst of temper’ requiring a cooling off period. In another example of shifting attitudes, such treatment is now seen as unacceptable. [p260]

As an aside, if you haven't read it, I highly recommend this piece by Patrick Stewart written in 2009 as part of his role as Ambassador for Refuge.
...there was nowhere to go for help. Worse, there were those who condoned the abuse. I heard police or ambulancemen, standing in our house, say, "She must have provoked him," or, "Mrs Stewart, it takes two to make a fight."
The Review notes that while things may be improving, there is still a very long way to go.
...high profile cases over the last twenty years highlight a repeatedly inadequate response to female victims that does not take their word, questions their character, and blames them for their own abuse.

Recent investigations into the vetting process for the Met, and policing nationally, have shown signs of serious failure. In 2020, the Centre for Women’s Justice submitted a super-complaint on the failure of the police to address police-perpetrated domestic abuse, highlighting the experiences of women who are abused by officers. [p260]
The Met's public approach to violence against women and girls was discussed in Chapter 5. Chapter 9.2 addresses sexism and misogyny as experienced by employees in the Met and 'the impact of offences committed by serving Met officers against women and girls.' [p261]

Recruitment of women in the Met
In December 2022, female officers comprised 31% of Met officers compared with 51.5% of the population. While falling short of female representation in the general population, this is nevertheless an improvement of 7 percentage points since April 2012 when female officers made up less than a quarter (24%) of all Met officers.

While the steady increase in the proportion of women in the force is to be welcomed, if recruitment of women continues to increase at the same pace, and taking into account current rates of attrition and predicted officer uplift, it will take the Met another thirty years to achieve gender balance (in 2053-54). [p261-262, my emphasis]
Incredibly, only a third of male Met employees think women are under-represented, and even more incredibly, only half of female Met employees think they are.
As we will discuss with ethnic diversity targets, it is clear that the Met itself has not made a proper assessment of what is achievable, or what additional steps might be needed to address the deficit in its workforce’s reflection of Londoners. [p262]
Attrition
Women resign at a 'slightly higher rate' than men [p263] but new recruits resign at much higher rates,
female recruits are resigning at four times the rate of probationers as a whole and 36% of all women probationers resigned in both 2020-21 and 2021-22. [p263]
Progression of women within the ranks
Despite a few prominent women senior officers,
women remain under represented in all supervisory and management roles. Women make up a less than a third of officers in all ranks above Constable level...

Women remain least represented at Sergeant, Inspector, Chief Inspector and Superintendent levels, and there has been the least improvement in gender diversity in these ranks since 2012-13. [p263]
Part time working and support for women returning to work after maternity leave is helping but there's a disconnect between promises and reality. Anonymous contributors told the Review,
“The Management Board say they support it [flexible working]; that’s great – then you check in with your department who say you are not allowed to do flexible working. The disconnect falls from the management board to the person you deal with.”

“Women are still being turned down for flexible working and other job share/Project balance opportunities. This is...a lottery on who is viewing your request. This prevents women returning to work after maternity or other leave and is a barrier to women applying for new roles and career progression.” [p265]
The 'boys club' is still prevalent, particularly in specialist commands.
We heard of women being sent off specialist units on promotion to ‘gain experience’. This denied them opportunities to progress in the policing area they wanted, while men got promoted within the team. In firearms command we were told:
“Three female officers were sent off the Command to ‘get operational experience’ elsewhere rather than being promoted internally. All three were told ‘you need to leave to get experience out of the Command and get credibility.’ Meanwhile, four male officers were all promoted in house. Why aren’t they going out for operational experience? [Because]... it’s an old boys’ club.” [p266]
Life for women in the Met
While the structural barriers to women are a problem, particularly to ethnic minority women,
it was the day-to-day experience of sexism, bias, bullying and misogyny against women employees that the Review Team found concerning. [p267]
33% of women had personally experienced sexism at work and a terrifying 12% had personally experienced sexual harassment or assault. Remember, these are the people who are supposed to investigate cases of sexual harassment and assault, and they're committing them against their own colleagues.
The everyday experience for many women ranged from patronising comments and downplaying of women’s achievements, to overt inappropriate sexual comments, unwanted attention, harassment and violence...

These behaviours are routinely accepted and seen as ‘just the way things are’ and women are expected to put up with it. [p267]
You'd think that officers would be on their best behaviour when the Review was in town, but apparently not,
Sexism was in plain sight on visits. We observed women being spoken over, put down and their views dismissed as inaccurate. [p268]
Sexism starts the moment you join, with female recruits being sexualised. Senior officers pretend this is just something that new recruits do to each other (though why that would be acceptable I'm not sure) but the Review says that 'what we saw and heard contradicted this' [p268] and that actually senior officers would 'prey on females like predators.' [p268]

One anonymous contributor said,
I've actually sat in a room when a senior officer has used the words ‘Any new hot totty to look at?’ [p269]
The Met have a reporting tool, Met SIGNA, that allows incidents of sexism and misogyny to be reported.
of 227 cases where the rank was known, 147 of perpetrators were in a senior position or in a position of authority (such as an instructor) relative to the reporting individual. [p269]
I'm not going to quote all the examples as there's too many, but if you have any doubts about the horrifically misogynistic culture in the Met then I highly recommend reading the quotes from anonymous contributors on pages 267 to 273.

These quotes include some from the WhatsApp group run by the Charing Cross police officers discussed at the start.
Many of these comments were downplayed by the officers under investigations as being ‘only banter’.
“They all said they thought he was joking and didn't think he would carry out anything.”
“They would say we're a close-knit team and this is how we joke about things.” [271]
I have mentioned several times how much I hate the term 'banter'. I think it has become a toxic term used intentionally euphemistically to describe overt bullying, harassment and dangerous attitudes. I would love to ask these people WHY they joked about things in this way. What is funny about saying that "DV victims love it. That's why they are repeat victims more often than not." [pp270] or that “If I was single I would happily chloroform you.” [p270]?

I get dark humour, I have a dark sense of humour myself. I simply don't find what's funny about these sorts of comments. Unless, 'it's funny because it's true.'
The [IOPC] report stated that those on the WhatsApp groups said they had ‘witnessed no discriminatory behaviour’. It noted this may indicate that ‘the officers spoken to did not consider the comments to be offensive, and that they were so commonplace they were not particularly memorable.’ [p271, my emphasis]
I think this is very telling.

As I described at the start of this post, the Met's response to the Hotton Report was to downplay its significance.
We were told it was a one-off, ‘a closed unit’, which had now been shut down. We were also told that it took place four years ago, as if it couldn’t possibly happen today, without explaining why that should be the case. Some senior Met officers clearly did not grasp the seriousness of the issues it uncovered...

The Met’s public response to Operation Hotton was to distance the organisational culture from what was reported in the IOPC’s report. [p271-272, my emphasis]
In November 2021 one of the BCUs (Basic Command Units) ran a 'male perspective' survey which asked, among other things, whether the Met has a problem with misogyny and sexism. It's unclear to me whether this survey was only open to men, or anything about its design or implementation. I'm incredibly curious about this survey and wish there was more information. Anyway, it found that,
Many men who responded were appalled at the sexism and misogyny that recent events had revealed. But others were unhappy about the impact that restrictions on making sexist and misogynistic comments might have on them. Their views were that such comments are just ‘banter’, and ‘dark humour’, necessary for protecting mental health in a stressful job, and shouldn’t be regulated. Reflecting the corporate viewpoint, they suggested that behaviours which cross the line are those of ‘a few bad apples’.

Views that the Met is ‘no worse than other organisations’, or even other countries, and that sexist and misogynistic behaviours are a reflection of general society missed the point that more is expected from police officers. [p272, my emphasis]
The comments are everything you'd expect from a group of men incapable of recognising their own culpability in creating and maintain a culture that is toxic to women. If you have low blood pressure and want to raise it quickly I recommend reading the anonymous comments on pages 272 to 273.

Speaking out against sexism and misogyny

No matter how many times leadership tells people to 'speak up', the reactions that occur when people do are so negative that very few dare to.
There is a legitimate fear among women that if they challenge or report sexist or misogynistic behaviour there will be serious implications for their working lives and careers.

This fear is borne out in many accounts. Women’s attempts to report inappropriate, or even criminal, behaviour were seen as ‘rocking the boat’ and that the women themselves were being a ‘troublemaker’ as opposed to being dealt with as examples of systemic misogyny.

Women and men who did speak out found themselves being informally punished for it, with micromanagement, being given undesirable tasks, being excluded or bullied in the workplace or moved to another team without asking. [p273]
Why bother speaking out when you won't be taken seriously,
“When the Sergeant who takes the report is smirking and trying not to laugh it really makes you feel like nothing will be done.” [p274]
Initiatives to challenge sexism and misogyny
It seems the Met is well aware of the sexism and misogyny endemic within it's institution. But is really doing f.ck-all to address it. That SIGNA project I mentioned earlier...
The project is entirely run by volunteers in their own time, and is reliant on supportive management and colleagues. Their work is to be commended.

The voluntary nature of the programme is seen as a positive, with increased engagement from staff because it is not part of ‘the system’, and the genuine motivation and momentum that the volunteers bring.

However, it is indicative to us that, rather than the Met making a corporate commitment to investigating and uncovering sexism and misogyny, volunteers have taken matters into their own hands. [p275, my emphasis]
Police perpetrated sexual misconduct and domestic abuse
The Interim Report published by the Review found that,
allegations about sexual harassment, sexual assault and sexual and emotional misconduct are less likely to result in a case to answer decision (29%) in comparison with all misconduct allegations (33%). [p275]
They also found that,
patterns of behaviour over time are not considered when undertaking misconduct investigations. Predatory behaviour of the type that frequently characterises sexual misconduct, stalking, harassment or domestic abuse, often escalating over years, is not identified. The Met does not look at patterns of conduct, but rather at each individual issue in isolation. This misses a core understanding of the nature of misogynistic behaviour, and therefore undermines the protection of women against police perpetrators of abuse and violence. [p275-276]
This really does make me wonder how they approach other police work. Do they take this approach to all crime?

Police Perpetrated Domestic Abuse
Perpetrators of domestic violence who are also police officers have an additional level of power, with the potential to influence the treatment of the victim and outcomes if victims report, and can wield the threat of this influence. [p276]
The super-complaint by the Centre for Women's Justice,
found evidence of police suspects trying to stop the victim from reporting to the police, drawing on their status as police officers to undermine the victim. [p276]
We saw this pattern of behaviour with David Carrick.
During the Review, we also heard of cases in the Met where friends and superiors had closed ranks around the police suspect to protect them.

It is also clear that, where crimes of abuse or sexual assault committed by a police officer are reported by a victim in another police force area, information is not automatically exchanged between the two forces. We also know that it is not a requirement for a suspect to reveal that they are a police officer when arrested. These are further ways in which a police perpetrator can continue their abuse. [p276, my emphasis]
They also found that the misconduct system was badly managed and 'missing and inconsistent data limited our ability to undertake our analysis' [p276]. Yet despite this, their findings echo those of previous investigations.

Domestic abuse allegations against officers have increased from around 3% in 2013-14 to 7% in 2021-22, but the Review thinks this is due to increased willingness to report, rather than an actual rise in incidents. But, far fewer of these cases resulted in a 'case to answer decision' [p277] than other allegations of misconduct. Some of this (9%) is due to victims withdrawing from the process, something that 'mirrors issues in criminal investigations' [p277] but this doesn't fully explain the discrepancy. Overall, 77% of domestic abuse misconduct allegations result in no formal action being taken. In these cases, interviews are rarely conducted, something the Review called 'a surprise and major concern' [p278].

Abuse of Position for a Sexual Purpose
Policing is a job that gives people a lot of power and some people will seek that power in order to exploit it. This isn't unique to police and systems and structures are used to 'screen them out or minimise the circumstances and situations in which abuse can occur.' [p278]. However, the police seem to be particularly attractive to those who want to abuse their position of power,
“Down through the years I have witnessed all sorts of behaviour by these officers: including surfing crime reports looking for female victims who live alone, contacting them when off-duty and offering 'support', contacting them via social media, talking about intimate details of the crime reports to officers not involved in the investigation, etc.” [p279]
f.cking hell,
The IOPC reports that the abuse of position for a sexual purpose is the most common form of corruption it deals with. In 2020, this accounted for 25% of referrals and almost 60% of corruption investigations nationally. They also observe that the scale of abuse of position for a sexual purpose, and sexual misconduct, is likely to be vastly underrepresented. [p279, my emphasis]
Holy f.ck. So, the Review asked the Met for 'figures on allegations of abuse of position for a sexual purpose' [p279]. They 'anticipated some under-reporting' [p279] given their monitoring system was fairly new.
The Met provided us with information regarding cases of abuse of position for a sexual purpose since 2020. Our own analysis of allegations over the same period found around six times as many allegations as the Met provided.

Examples of allegations not classified as abuse of position for a sexual purpose included: a sexual assault that took place within a holding cell in a custody suite; another in a hospital while the officer was on duty; and another in a complainant’s home, also while the officer was on duty.

The Met said they were unable to provide any figures on abuse of position for a sexual purpose prior to 2020. However, in reviewing public complaint data from earlier years, we identified an average of 60 allegations per year between 2013 and 2020 in which officers were accused of sexual assault or other sexual misconduct whilst on duty. [p279-280, my emphasis]
As with the domestic abuse misconduct cases, the vast majority of complaint allegations related to abuse of position for a sexual purpose are dismissed (83%). Only 3% have a 'case to answer'.

There are senior officers and instructors who routinely target young female officers.
Despite extensive guidance, it does not appear that this issue is viewed as a corruption issue which needs to be tackled strategically and structurally within the Met.177 Poor data quality and inconsistency in recording, and most allegations resulting in no action, suggests a lack of grip. [p281]
Operation Rainier – the Met’s review of sexual misconduct cases
Operation Rainier was a 'key plank' [p281] of the Rebuilding Trust Programme (the one that seems to have been quietly scrapped). It looked at all 313 live sexual misconduct and domestic abuse cases and a 'dip' sample of 100 similar cases over the past decade. The report determined that about 3/4 of the investigations were 'of a good standard' [p281] but had some worrying findings in the following areas:

Vetting
9% of people investigated 'were linked in some way to allegations of sexual misconduct or domestic abuse at the point of initial vetting to join the Met' [p282]. In the vast majority of these cases, the vetting team didn't share this information so it wasn't recorded on the misconduct intelligence system.
There were at least two cases which were in line with approved practice, but in which applicants had been let in despite previous convictions or acquittals for rape having been identified. These individuals later came to the attention of DPS due to sexual misconduct. [p282]
Lack of action taken
In the dip sample, 85% of cases resulted in no further action being taken. This aligns with the results of the Review's own investigations.

Investigations are not sufficiently rigorous
In criminal cases, over a quarter were found to requiring improvement (21%) or were inadequate (6%). For misconduct cases it was a third (27% requiring improvement, 7% inadequate).
In nearly half of all cases (115 out of 249) DPS investigators did not check all the available evidence with DPS’s Intelligence Bureau [p282]
In 38 cases they didn't even bother to interview the suspect!

Patterns of behaviour are not looked for
The IPCC published guidance in 2015 that highlighted 'he importance of investigating repeat behaviour, stating that the ‘officer’s complaint history should be considered in all cases’.' [p283] but this was only done in 2% of cases.

Operation Rainier was a 'top priority' [p283] for the Rebuilding Trust Programme but it 'reflects an optimism bias that effectively says this is all ‘business as usual’' [p283], with the standard line that it's just a small minority and doesn't reflect the Met as a whole and with the standard response of another short-term scheme to fix things.

A further review - operation Onyx - is underway following the conviction of Carrick and will review 'all cases involving all allegations of domestic abuse and sexual offences, child abuse and other offences, with the option to re-open cases.' [p284]. Definitely sounds like something to keep an eye out for.

Conclusion
The Met is proud of having women at the very top of their organisation, but this gives cover to an 'old boys club' that underrepresents women in all ranks above Constable.
The Met’s data, and its own review of misconduct and criminal investigations into police perpetrated domestic and sexual violence, indicates a worrying level of complacency about the risks posed by police officers who prey on officers and members of the public. [p284, my emphasis]
The Met hasn't grasped the fact that many men are attracted to it by the power it gives them, and doesn't seem to have any systems in place to identify and exclude these people. It's insistence on treating misconduct as a 'series of processes and procedures' [p284] prevents it from effectively identifying those who are corrupting the integrity of the Met.
Women are not treated equally in the Met, and its structures and processes reinforce discrimination. We also see this across its treatment of crimes that mainly affect women and girls in London, as discussed in chapter 5 on Public Protection.

The Review finds the Met to be institutionally sexist and misogynistic. [p285, my emphasis]
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Sun Apr 16, 2023 8:59 pm

Chapter 9.3: Racism
Introduction
We start by stating the obvious,
There is a very long history linking British policing with mistreatment of, and prejudice against, Black and ethnic minority communities. [p286]
The Review briefly describes the Macpherson Inquiry and its conclusion that the Met was 'institutionally racist' [p287]. It acknowledges that the Met 'is very different to the force of the 1990s in many ways' [p287] but also notes that it 'continues to be described by some as institutionally racist' [p287] and that in recent years the Met has begun to deny the presence of institutional racism in its organisation.

Racism and its persistence in the Met
The Review recognises that 'the same themes emerge regularly in the many past inquiries and investigations into racism in the Met' [p288] and says it has also found these issues. They are:

Diversity within the workforce - the Met still doesn't represent the population it serves and at current recruitment rates it would take 40 years before it does, 10 years more than to meet equality for women.
The key issue here is that nothing that the Met has done or is currently planning to do that will change this position in the near future. [p288]

Professional standards - Black, Asian and ethnic minority officers and staff routinely face discrimination. The Review's Interim Report on misconduct (discussed in Chapter 7) found 'evidence of systemic racial bias' [p288].

‘Under-protection’ - Areas with higher minority populations see a more active Met police presence yet this doesn't result in better protection - the opposite is true and 'victimisation is in fact higher for certain crimes' [p289].

'Over-policing’ and disproportionate use of powers against certain communities - Black, Asian and ethnic minority Londoners are subjected to higher rates of stop and search, the use of force, strip searches, injuries and deaths during interactions with Met police compared to white Londoners.
These issues broadly fall into either the internal culture of the Met, or how the Met treats its own people of colour; or the external face of the Met, or how the Met interacts with different communities in London.

The two issues are inextricably linked. On one hand, how Black, Asian, and ethnic minority communities are represented at all levels of the Met workforce impacts how the Met understands, engages with and makes decisions affecting different communities.

On the other, how the Met treats its officers and staff of colour impacts on how different communities view and interact with the organisation, as well as informing decisions such as whether they want to join the police. [p289]
The Met’s workforce; the internal culture
Recruitment and representation
Black, Asian and ethnic minority groups are under-represented in all police forces, and the Met is actually the best in terms of representation, which is a very depressing statistic. Numbers have improved, with Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers increasing from 10% of the workforce in 2012 to 17% in 2022. But for Black, Asian, and ethnic minority women the figures are much worse, with a 3% increase in the same time period, making up only 5% of Met officers in 2022. There are much smaller fluctuations in the numbers of Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers being recruited compared to the broader population.
This means that more recruitment of Met officers has not automatically resulted in more candidates from ethnically diverse backgrounds. [p291]
For the final time in the Review we have their survey results to see whether that under-representation is recognised. 49% of Met employees think that Black people are under-represented in the organisation. 83% of Black respondents think this compared to 47% of White respondents. A survey of Londoners found similar results - overall 51% think that Black people are under-represented, 72% of Black Londoners think this and 46% of White Londoners do.
The Met have repeatedly acknowledged a lack of diversity as both a challenge and a priority. There have been various initiatives designed to reduce disparity....

Having initiatives designed to attract greater ethnic diversity... has been a positive step by the Met. However, rather than acknowledging the importance of these initiatives, a view has been allowed to emerge in some officers, including some of those at a senior level, that standards have been lowered to attract more diverse officers into the force. [p292, my emphasis]
This comment by an anonymous contributor is indicative of this view,
“There is a disproportionate number of people leaving the job from underrepresented groups: is because they were recruited but never stood a chance or are we inherently racist? Think it’s the former.” [p292]
This is an argument anyone who's done any work in DEI initiatives will be familiar with and it's bollocks. But repeat a lie enough times and people will believe it,
This has translated into a myth that is repeated in the organisation, so much so that officers at different ranks in the organisation felt comfortable repeating it in the company of their colleagues who are from a Black, Asian and ethnic minority background, officers and members of the Review team. [p292]
The Review describes an interview His Majesty’s Inspector Matt Parr had with The Telegraph where he repeated these myths, calling them 'anecdotes'. The Met did nothing to challenge this narrative. The report has a quite glorious footnote about this,
Mr Parr has asked the Review to explain that the words quoted were ones he had heard anecdotally; HMICFRS has not inspected on this topic and Mr Parr had no evidence that standards were being lowered [p292, my emphasis]
The Review goes on to the describe the 'huge challenge' that the Met faces to improve diversity and fully reflect the communities it serves. As with all the other minority groups the Review has examined, the Met is ill-equiped to even understand the scale of the task before it.
The Met does not appear to have made any assessment of what is achievable, or what additional steps might be needed to address the deficit in its workforce’s reflection of Londoners...

If the problem is that the Met cannot meet its diversity aspirations, then it is even more important that it overhauls how it works with and polices the communities of London. It must ask itself searching questions about why it is so difficult to attract talent from London’s diverse pool of talents.

The Met also needs to be proactive in countering corrosive myths about the quality of diverse recruits, and it needs to do so right from the top of the organisation. [p293, my emphasis]
Progression
As with women, there is a lack of career progression for Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers. If you're a Black, Asian, or ethnic minority woman your chance of progress is even more limited.
In 2021-22 Black, Asian, and ethnic minority women made up less than 2% of Superintendents and 3% Inspectors in the Met. As of 31 December 2022, there are no female Black, Asian or ethnic minority Chief Superintendents in the Met. [p295, my emphasis]
Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers apply for promotion, are denied due to a "lack of experience" and then are denied opportunities to gain that experience. Those who do get promoted are assumed to have achieved it as a result of diversity initiatives rather than merit. And if you speak up about discrimination any lingering possibilities of promotion disappear.
Many Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers reflected that those who put up with discrimination stood a greater chance of getting by. They said challenging discrimination or showing offence would stymie progress...

A former Met officer reflected:
"The ugly truth is that the organisation is riddled with racism – how much have
people like me acquiesced?" [p297]
Attrition
Unsurprisingly, attrition rates are higher for Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers. The Review suspects that many are 'put off by a lack of progress' [p297].
Officers and staff also told us that the leadership, culture, and mission are leading some Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers to consider leaving the Met. The Review heard from numerous people of colour who said they had had enough, and would be leaving at the first opportunity. [p297]
While resignation rates of probationers are low, Black, Asian, and ethnic minority probationers resign at double the rate of White probationers.

Officers can be served a notice if they are considered 'unsuitable for policing' [p298] termed a Regulation 13 notice. Dismissal as a result of a Regulation 13 notice is really low, but 'many probationers served with a Regulation 13 notice will, unsurprisingly, end up resigning.' [p298]. You will be unsurprised to hear that they are disproportionately served against Black, Asian, and ethnic minority probationers.
between 2018 and 2022, when compared with White officers:
- Black officers are 126% more likely to be subject to a Regulation 13 case
- Asian officers are 123% more likely
- Mixed ethnicity officers are 50% more likely. [p299]
The disciplinary system: grievances and misconduct
If a Met employee wants to report a concern about their treatment within the organisation they have two primary routes. If they think a colleague has breached standards of professional behaviour the have to raise an allegation of misconduct. If they think a colleague has problems with their work, working environment, or working relationships they raise a formal grievance.
Black, Asian, or Mixed ethnicity officers and staff were considerably more likely to raise a grievance than their White colleagues. [p300]
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) investigated the Met's handling of discrimination cases and published its report in 2016, finding 'significant weaknesses' [p300].
This included poor data collection and inconsistent application of legislation and policy. Overall, the report found a ‘general reluctance within the MPS to admit mistakes and apologise for them’.

It said that the policy requiring all claims of discrimination to be escalated to misconduct meant there was a widely held perception that raising a discrimination grievance would lead to the complainant being the subject of formal and informal victimisation within the organisation.

Due to poor data, the report could not conclude whether there was indeed any victimisation of those who made discrimination grievances. The report concluded that the perception was sufficiently widely and strongly held to suppress these grievances being made. [p300]
While Black, Asian, or Mixed ethnicity officers and staff were far more likely to raise a grievance than their White colleagues, Black, Asian, or Mixed ethnicity officers and staff were far more likely to be the subject of a misconduct allegation, and these allegations were more likely to result in a 'case to answer' decision.
It has not been possible for the Review to connect the grievance data to the misconduct data, as the Met’s misconduct data only shows information on the person complained about, and grievance data only shows information on the complainant. However, the disproportionate representation of Black, Asian, and Mixed ethnicity Met employees in misconduct cases raises questions around the grievance process as well. [p302]
I think they suspect that officers who raise a formal grievance are more likely to face retribution by having misconduct allegations made against them.
The disproportionality within the front-end of the misconduct system, reflected in the number of allegations, is a now a well-established fact. MOPAC, the EHRC, and the NPCC have all reached this same conclusion. [p303]
The explanation provided to the Review was that managers are 'ill-equipped to have informal conversations about poor performance or practice' [p303] and are scared of being accused of being racist if they challenge the behaviour of Black, Asian, or another ethnic minority officers so rely on the formal system to manage concerns.

The report notes that it's 'entirely possible' [p303] that poor management tools has resulted in the disproportionate number of Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers entering the formal system. But it notes that this overlooks two potential alternative explanations:
1) Too few allegations against White officers and greater leniency shown to those who do have allegations made;
2) Allegations being made against Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers as punishment 'when they raise their head above the parapet to call out poor behaviour' [p303]
Like the EHRC, who tried to test this theory of victimisation in grievances, the Review has found the data available is also too poor when it comes to misconduct. Whilst details on the subject of a misconduct complaint are well-recorded, details on the person making the complaint are not. [p304]
The Review also notes that allegations of racism and discrimination aren't taken seriously (supporting their first alternative explanation).
We found further evidence of this in the misconduct system. Allegations regarding race and faith-based discrimination are poorly recorded. But from what we can see, they are less likely than other allegations to have a ‘case to answer’ found.

The Review has been told by many officers of colour of direct experiences of racism or discrimination which has resulted in inappropriate action, or no action at all. [p304-305]
Experience of racism in the Met
Black, Asian, and ethnic minority officers routinely face discrimination from their colleagues and superiors. They have been subjected to stop and search, even after joining the Met.

One officer recounted,
“I have been stopped and asked for ID on multiple occasions inside police stations. I understand the need for security but the amount is abnormal. I have been mistaken for a lawyer or FME [force medical examiner] or a prisoner (despite being in suits) on numerous occasions and on one occasion I was actually reviewed by an inspector in custody who thought I was a prisoner he had to complete a PACE [Police and Criminal Evidence] review on!” [p305-306]
White officers express racist sentiments openly, even around their Black, Asian, and ethnic minority colleagues. The Black Lives Matter protests in 2020 exacerbated the divide between White and Black, Asian, and ethnic minority employees.
Their experiences make it difficult for ethnic minority officers to recommend other people of colour to join the Met. Many ethnic minority officers told us that they are doubly isolated: Isolated at work by virtue of their colour; and isolated in their community by virtue of having joined the Met. [p308]
The Met and Black Londoners
'The Peelian notion of policing by consent relies on trust' [p308] yet trust in the Met has fallen below 50% for Black and mixed ethnicity Londoners.
As Macpherson said:
Seeking to achieve trust and confidence through the demonstration of fairness will not in itself be sufficient. It must be accompanied by a vigorous pursuit of openness and accountability across Police Services.
This statement shows that procedural justice, while important, is not sufficient. The organisation needs to be transparent and accountable for its mistakes, able to accept challenge, and prepared to hold itself to a higher standard. [p311]
In the immediate aftermath of the Macpherson report there were efforts to improve things for Black and other ethnic minority groups which had a positive impact for a 'couple of years' [p311] but things have stalled.

Under-protection of Black communities
Despite being subjected to substantially higher levels of policing in London, Black Londoners remain considerably more likely to be the victims of several serious and violent crimes than White Londoners. This leads to the view that London’s communities of colour are both over-policed and under-protected. [p312]
There's a bunch of horrifying statistics about how Black people are more likely to be victims of violent crimes including rape, domestic abuse and murder.
And in every year since at least 2002-03, Black people were at least twice as likely to be the victim of a homicide. The most recent data shows Black people were nearly six times more likely to be murdered in London. [p312]
MOPAC does satisfaction surveys of Londoners who are victims of crimes. They found that Black, Asian, and ethnic minority people have consistently lower satisfaction levels and those who report hate crimes were the least satisfied. 'This has remained consistent over time.' [p313]

Hate crimes are increasing, but are under-reported.
When it is reported, the conviction rate for racially motivated crimes has been lower in the Met (66% in 2020) than for England and Wales (71%). t has been gradually rising, but this is in the context of plummeting proportions of racially motivated crimes reaching trial in the first place. Between 2010 and 2020 there was a 44% decrease in volume of racially motivated crimes reaching trial in the Met. [p314]
While Macpherson has improved the way that the Met recognises and responds to racist incidents, the Met still fails Black, Asian and minority ethnic Londoners.
Black Londoners have continuously made allegations against Met officers at a much higher rate than any other ethnic group relative to their population. Black Londoners make 26% of complaints when they make up only 13.5% of the population. There was also an increase in the volume of complaints linked to race discrimination in 2020-21. [p316]
Use of powers: Stop and search, and ‘every contact leaves a trace’
There is 'widespread support' for stop and search among the public, but this support is not even. 77% of White people support stop and search while only 53% of Black people do.
The Met Police make the greatest use of stop and search powers of any force in the country. They consistently account for 40-50% of all stops carried out in England and Wales. Stop and search is deeply embedded in the Met’s culture. [p316, my emphasis]
In 2020, '1 in 4 Black males aged 15-24 in London were stopped and searched in a three-month period] [p317]. This is about the same level described in the Macpherson report over 20 years ago.

The Met accepts it uses stop and search disproportionately but explains that they target high crime areas which tend to be areas where Black people live. It even claims it's helping Black people,
It has also said that the Met is saving young Black lives by using stop and search in the way they do, as young Black boys and men are not only more likely carry a knife, but also more likely to suffer from someone else using that knife. [p317]
Despite their intentions, the reality is that between 70-80% of stop and searches lead to no further action, and the more that are done the more that result in no further action. Drugs are the main reason people are stopped and searched, then theft, then weapons. Only 12% of stop nd searches lead to arrest, ranking the Met 31 out of 44 forces in England and Wales in terms of arrest rate. Research published in 2019 showed that stop and search is ineffective,
Overall, our analysis of ten years’ worth of London-wide data suggests that although stop and search had a weak association with some forms of crime, this effect was at the outer margins of statistical and social significance. We found no evidence for effects on robbery and theft, vehicle crime or criminal damage, and inconsistent evidence of very small effects on burglary, non- domestic violent crime and total crime. When we looked separately at S.60 searches [Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 that allows an officer to stop and search someone without the need for suspicion], it did not appear that a sudden surge in use had any effect on the underlying trend in nondomestic violent crime. [p318-319]
The Review notes that a systematic review published this year found evidence of crime reduction but the costs in terms of increasing levels of distrust and negative attitudes towards police outweighed the marginal benefits and concluded "Existing scientific evidence does not support the widespread use of [police stops] as a proactive policing strategy" [p319]

The Review 'heard numerous examples of stop and search being carried out badly on Londoners from Black, Asian ethnic minority backgrounds' including examples were officers were admitted to racial profiling, were rude and used excessive force, humiliating those being subjected to the stop and search.
the Met’s response, both to these examples and to complaints, was to focus on whether the search was lawful, rather than considering whether it was done well, or fairly, or examining the impact on the person being searched and their view of the police.

In a system of policing by consent, considering whether an act was lawful or not is not sufficient. [p320, my emphasis]
Officers routinely told the Review 'they understood that ‘every contact leaves a trace’ [p320] but they found no evidence 'the Met has built this approach to its application of stop and search as a crime fighting tool.' [p320]
The Review was unable to identify any indications that the Met had explored the impact of stop and search on the trust and confidence of Londoners, especially the young Black men who are disproportionately the victims and perpetrators of police recorded violence in London. [p320]
The Met hasn't considered that their approach could mean that people in communities targeted by stop and search are less likely to help the police in either prevention or solving of crimes. Instead of recognising that the problem with stop and search is that it targets groups unfairly, doesn't reduce crime and harms relationships with communities, they seem to think the problem is that the public just doesn't understand what they're trying to do properly. It's very reminiscent of the deficit model of science communication.
This is an example of how the Met engages with the public. The belief is that it is for the public to understand the Met better, not for the Met to listen or understand public concerns regarding stop and search.

Attempts on the part of MOPAC to hold the Met to account and understand better their approach to stop and search, have been met with resistance. [p321]
They use the example of a joint Met and MOPAC Body-Worn Video Camera research project which is a complete shitshow. It was first discussed in 2018, but wasn't announced until 2020 when they finally agreed on the project's aims and terms of reference. That wasn't the end of the disagreements and the Met finally agreed the project could proceed as a pilot in February 2021 as long as they were the only ones to access and code the footage. Training was scheduled to begin in summer 2021 but didn't get going until December due to staff illness and abstractions. Coding of videos took place in the first three months of 2022 and the first meeting of the Advisory Group took place. The data was given to MOPAC in July 2022.
When MOPAC reviewed the work, they found huge variation across coders’ level of detail and on key information including use of Taser, use of PAVA,235 subjects fleeing the scene, and subjects in possession of a weapon. Officers were often coding the same encounter in very different ways. MOPAC held debrief sessions with the Met in October 2022 to discuss the issues, but the Review was told only four of the initial 20 coders attended, some of whom had not done any coding. In November 2022 MOPAC paused the project indefinitely as they were unable to fully understand or address the coding variation or amend the coding framework without the ability to review the footage. [p322]
Discussions took place between the Met and MOPAC at the beginning of 2023 to try and find a solution. A further meeting took place in February but MOPAC weren't even invited.
Stop and search is currently deployed by the Met at the cost of legitimacy, trust and, therefore consent. To date, the Met has been unable to explain clearly enough why its use is justified on the scale it uses it, and in the manner and way it is carried out, particularly on Black Londoners. It has damaged trust. If the Met is unable to explain and justify its disproportionate use and the impacts of these, then it needs a fundamental reset. [p322, my emphasis]
Use of Force
Black people are far more likely to be handcuffed, beaten with a baton or tasered than White people. Every independent review finds disproportionate use of force against Black and ethnic minority people.
The Review’s own data shows significant levels of disproportionality. When sharing our findings with the Met, the Review was informed that they had conducted their own internal analysis in December 2020 that reached a very different conclusion – little to no ethnic disproportionality. [p324]
They found this by looking at the ethnic composition of people in custody, rather than of London itself.
Using the custody population as a baseline for understanding potential disproportionality in the Met’s use of force is concerning for several reasons. By trying to assess ethnic proportionality of “the types of people our officers encounter in situations that could lead to the use of force” assumes no disproportionality or bias exists in any and all encounters the Met have with the public. Using the custody population as a proxy for these “types of people” assumes there is no disproportionality or bias in the make-up of this population, including how and why they (and not others) were arrested and taken into custody in the first place. For this reason, we do not accept the results of this analysis. [p325]
Strip searching children: ‘adultification’
This section begins by discussing the Child Q case, which we discussed here. To summarise, a 15 year old girl was strip searched by two Met officers in her school because she smelled of weed. Racism was determined to be a factor in the decision to strip search her in a Local Child Safeguarding Practice Review. There's an ongoing IOPC investigation into the officers which means that the Review can't comment on the incident. But they can discuss the results of and Office of the Children’s Commissioner investigation into the issue of strip searching children. They found that between 2018 and 2020 the Met strip searched 650 children, a quarter of whom were between 10 and 15 years old and that Black children were disproportionately strip searched.
Of these 650 searches:
- In 23% of instances an Appropriate Adult was not present
- In 53% of instances no further action was taken
- In more than half of the searches the location was not recorded. [p326]
The prevalence of widespread racial disproportionality in intimate searches lends weight to the claim that ‘adultification’, where Black children are treated as adults and as a threat, therefore justifying greater use of force or intrusive interventions, is present in the Met. [p326]
The Review heard of a child who told a 'non-police safeguarding professional' [p326] that they had got involved in a gang but wanted to leave, and were carrying a knife for protection. Later, they told that same professional they'd been assaulted by an adult. The professional contacted the police, who ended up arresting the child.
“We completely lost him, he totally disengaged. He lost trust in the safeguarding professional, he didn't trust the authorities.” [p326]
At the beginning of this year the Runnymede Trust recommended that the power of strip searching children be removed, and all Safer Schools Officers be withdrawn from schools 'due to the disproportionate impacts on Black and ethnic minority communities and their failure to support a safer school environment.' [p327]

While the Met recognises individual cases of 'procedural mistakes and policy breeches' [p327] it is unwilling to 'interrogate whether there are broader issues around race, desensitisation and systemic bias towards Black children.' [p327]
It is symptomatic of the Met’s approach to understanding, recognising, and responding to allegations of racism within its ranks. [p327]
Black Londoners and lack of trust
The low levels of trust and confidence in the Met among Black and Mixed ethnicity Londoners are a result of years of failings.
We heard from Black Londoners about a deep mistrust of the Met resulting from years of over-policing and under-protection. The Met deals with each incident by explaining the lawfulness or correctness of a procedure, but it ignores a much wider and deeper experience.

Lack of trust is generational. While many families teach their children that police are there to keep you safe, many Black Londoners have to teach their children something different: that they should avoid contact with the police in case they are stopped or searched without cause. With each generation, that mistrust deepens. [p327, my emphasis]
Conclusion
The Review concludes that, 'the findings in this chapter are not new' [p329]. The racism encountered by employees of the Met and the people they purport to serve have long been known.
These point to a collective and continued failure by the Met to understand, accept and address the existence of racism at all levels in the organisation. We have found complacency in the Met to tackle problems, a lack of curiosity about what people of colour are telling them; and a wilful blindness to seeing the evidence all around them, within and outside the Met...

We have found institutional racism in the Metropolitan Police. [p329, my emphasis]
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by jimbob » Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:01 pm

But apart from that, it's okay?

Just a handful of bad apples (that even the head of the Met says he can't remove) but it's not that big a problem
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Gfamily » Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:17 pm

Thank you Fishnut for going through the report. So dispiriting to read your summaries, so your having been through the report is very much appreciated.
My avatar was a scientific result that was later found to be 'mistaken' - I rarely claim to be 100% correct
ETA 5/8/20: I've been advised that the result was correct, it was the initial interpretation that needed to be withdrawn
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:20 pm

jimbob wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:01 pm
But apart from that, it's okay?

Just a handful of bad apples (that even the head of the Met says he can't remove) but it's not that big a problem
The next chapter is, thankfully, the last and will be the Review's conclusions but I don't think they'll do a better summation of the problems than the conclusion in this chapter where they criticised the Met's complacency, lack of curiosity and wilful blindness to the problems it faces.

I do find it interesting that at the time of the Macpherson report they seem to have accepted the charge of institutional racism yet despite having made very few real improvements (many of which seems to be largely cosmetic) they now reject that view and return time and time again to the 'bad apples' line. A few bad apples rot the whole barrel, unless they are promptly removed. The Met routinely fails to remove them. It is institutionally rotten as a result.

I really get the impression that the Met sees all this as a PR problem. There were comments in earlier chapters about how they think the press are to blame for the negative perceptions people have about the Met. And in this Chapter we saw them excusing the dislike of stop and search among Black communities as a failure of those communities to understand what they were trying to achieve. The idea that maybe stop and search is a terrible way to achieve their aims isn't one they can countenance.

Despite there being numerous reports over the years detailing the same problems and offering a multitude of recommendations the Met dismisses them. I think that arrogance and a belief they know better than these outsiders fuels this. What continues to astound me is that they are an organisation whose job it is to prevent and solve crime. I'd imagine this needs the ability to follow chains of evidence and synthesise multiple strands; to be able to identify the importance of individual details and then fit them into a broader picture. Yet they seem singularly incapable of doing that when it comes to their own officers and organisation. The fact that even in misconduct cases they don't look at the broader context, whether officers have had other similar complaints made, whether patterns of behaviour are revealing themselves, astonishes me. When it comes to public opinion they cherry-pick the few good results and ignore the overwhelming majority of bad ones, rather than ponder what they could mean about how they interact with the public and what effect this will have on people's willingness to help them. The lack of curiosity is overwhelming and baffling.
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:21 pm

Gfamily wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:17 pm
Thank you Fishnut for going through the report. So dispiriting to read your summaries, so your having been through the report is very much appreciated.
You're welcome :) I fear the summaries are getting longer and longer but I promise they are still shorter than the chapters themselves!
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by jimbob » Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:23 pm

Fishnut wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:20 pm
jimbob wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:01 pm
But apart from that, it's okay?

Just a handful of bad apples (that even the head of the Met says he can't remove) but it's not that big a problem
The next chapter is, thankfully, the last and will be the Review's conclusions but I don't think they'll do a better summation of the problems than the conclusion in this chapter where they criticised the Met's complacency, lack of curiosity and wilful blindness to the problems it faces.

I do find it interesting that at the time of the Macpherson report they seem to have accepted the charge of institutional racism yet despite having made very few real improvements (many of which seems to be largely cosmetic) they now reject that view and return time and time again to the 'bad apples' line. A few bad apples rot the whole barrel, unless they are promptly removed. The Met routinely fails to remove them. It is institutionally rotten as a result.

I really get the impression that the Met sees all this as a PR problem. There were comments in earlier chapters about how they think the press are to blame for the negative perceptions people have about the Met. And in this Chapter we saw them excusing the dislike of stop and search among Black communities as a failure of those communities to understand what they were trying to achieve. The idea that maybe stop and search is a terrible way to achieve their aims isn't one they can countenance.

Despite there being numerous reports over the years detailing the same problems and offering a multitude of recommendations the Met dismisses them. I think that arrogance and a belief they know better than these outsiders fuels this. What continues to astound me is that they are an organisation whose job it is to prevent and solve crime. I'd imagine this needs the ability to follow chains of evidence and synthesise multiple strands; to be able to identify the importance of individual details and then fit them into a broader picture. Yet they seem singularly incapable of doing that when it comes to their own officers and organisation. The fact that even in misconduct cases they don't look at the broader context, whether officers have had other similar complaints made, whether patterns of behaviour are revealing themselves, astonishes me. When it comes to public opinion they cherry-pick the few good results and ignore the overwhelming majority of bad ones, rather than ponder what they could mean about how they interact with the public and what effect this will have on people's willingness to help them. The lack of curiosity is overwhelming and baffling.
Absolutely
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Sciolus » Mon Apr 17, 2023 7:44 am

Fishnut wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:20 pm
What continues to astound me is that they are an organisation whose job it is to prevent and solve crime. I'd imagine this needs the ability to follow chains of evidence and synthesise multiple strands; to be able to identify the importance of individual details and then fit them into a broader picture. Yet they seem singularly incapable of doing that when it comes to their own officers and organisation. The fact that even in misconduct cases they don't look at the broader context, whether officers have had other similar complaints made, whether patterns of behaviour are revealing themselves, astonishes me. When it comes to public opinion they cherry-pick the few good results and ignore the overwhelming majority of bad ones, rather than ponder what they could mean about how they interact with the public and what effect this will have on people's willingness to help them. The lack of curiosity is overwhelming and baffling.
You don't think it is consistent with their approach to crime? There are plenty of examples of the police deciding whodunnit and fitting the prosecution case to fit through cherry-picking, suppressing contrary evidence and lack of curiosity. That's why the CPS had to be split off from the police.

Edit: Posted before I read Chris Preston's post.

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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 17, 2023 8:00 am

Sciolus wrote:
Mon Apr 17, 2023 7:44 am
Fishnut wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:20 pm
What continues to astound me is that they are an organisation whose job it is to prevent and solve crime. I'd imagine this needs the ability to follow chains of evidence and synthesise multiple strands; to be able to identify the importance of individual details and then fit them into a broader picture. Yet they seem singularly incapable of doing that when it comes to their own officers and organisation. The fact that even in misconduct cases they don't look at the broader context, whether officers have had other similar complaints made, whether patterns of behaviour are revealing themselves, astonishes me. When it comes to public opinion they cherry-pick the few good results and ignore the overwhelming majority of bad ones, rather than ponder what they could mean about how they interact with the public and what effect this will have on people's willingness to help them. The lack of curiosity is overwhelming and baffling.
You don't think it is consistent with their approach to crime? There are plenty of examples of the police deciding whodunnit and fitting the prosecution case to fit through cherry-picking, suppressing contrary evidence and lack of curiosity. That's why the CPS had to be split off from the police.

Edit: Posted before I read Chris Preston's post.
You make a good point. There's been times when I've thought this thought that I've added an addendum that maybe it shouldn't be so surprising given their inability to solve most crimes. But I haven't looked into crime figures beyond rape/domestic abuse and didn't want to tar with too broad a brush without actual evidence.
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by jimbob » Mon Apr 17, 2023 8:57 am

Fishnut wrote:
Mon Apr 17, 2023 8:00 am
Sciolus wrote:
Mon Apr 17, 2023 7:44 am
Fishnut wrote:
Sun Apr 16, 2023 9:20 pm
What continues to astound me is that they are an organisation whose job it is to prevent and solve crime. I'd imagine this needs the ability to follow chains of evidence and synthesise multiple strands; to be able to identify the importance of individual details and then fit them into a broader picture. Yet they seem singularly incapable of doing that when it comes to their own officers and organisation. The fact that even in misconduct cases they don't look at the broader context, whether officers have had other similar complaints made, whether patterns of behaviour are revealing themselves, astonishes me. When it comes to public opinion they cherry-pick the few good results and ignore the overwhelming majority of bad ones, rather than ponder what they could mean about how they interact with the public and what effect this will have on people's willingness to help them. The lack of curiosity is overwhelming and baffling.
You don't think it is consistent with their approach to crime? There are plenty of examples of the police deciding whodunnit and fitting the prosecution case to fit through cherry-picking, suppressing contrary evidence and lack of curiosity. That's why the CPS had to be split off from the police.

Edit: Posted before I read Chris Preston's post.
You make a good point. There's been times when I've thought this thought that I've added an addendum that maybe it shouldn't be so surprising given their inability to solve most crimes. But I haven't looked into crime figures beyond rape/domestic abuse and didn't want to tar with too broad a brush without actual evidence.
You'd have no career in the Met, or many other police forces then.
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Opti » Mon Apr 17, 2023 1:24 pm

Thanks Fishnut. You've put an heroic amount of effort into this and I think we all, I'm sure, are extremely grateful to you. Excellent work with a really shocking document.
Time for a big fat one.

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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 17, 2023 6:50 pm

Opti wrote:
Mon Apr 17, 2023 1:24 pm
Thanks Fishnut. You've put an heroic amount of effort into this and I think we all, I'm sure, are extremely grateful to you. Excellent work with a really shocking document.
Thank you :)
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 17, 2023 7:49 pm

Chapter 10: The missing voice of Londoners
I misspoke in a previous post and said the last chapter was the Review's conclusions. I'm not sure where I got that idea from, I think I just misread the Contents. The last chapter is about the interactions between the Met and the people it serves. I've also realised that in my desire to get into the meat of the report I skipped the Introduction so will tackle that next, before finally getting to the Recommendations.

Introduction
We start once again by reiterating the Peelian principle of policing by consent. 'Effective and regular communication and engagement between the public and the police is integral' [p333] to this model. Yet as resources have become stretched police are less visible and the ability to engage with the community is lessened.

Neighbourhood policing
The Neighbourhood Policing teams are tiny compared to their predecessors and despite the ring-fencing introduced in 2018 they still face abstractions that prevent them from getting to know their area. (There's more info on this in Chapters 4 and 5). This means that most Londoners will interact with the police in 'an emergency or confrontational context' [p334] and,
This places a greater imperative on Response teams and public order teams such as TSG to ensure their interactions are polite, respectful and proportionate as they have become the face of policing in London. [p334-335]
The Met’s approach to communications and community engagement
The Met approaches engagement as a box-ticking exercise, an opportunity to get the community to sign off on plans that are already finalised. They have lots of activities but they are one-way, with the Met explaining itself to the public rather than trying to gain outside perspectives.
“[Liaising] with the community...basically involves telling them what the Met’s doing and why and if they only understood what the Met was doing they would realise that the Met was doing the right thing.”
A senior official who worked with the Met talked about engagement work:
“There were a lot of events such as faith breakfasts. But they were very defensive of the Met in tone. A lot of it was just explain it better or more, i.e. don’t accept criticism and then actually change, just defend practices and don’t change. That’s not community engagement.”
[p336-337]
As a result of this one-way communication, when the Met is forced to respond, it doesn't know how.
We heard and saw for ourselves examples of where the Met focused on a particular incident but seemed unable to respond to the context of a situation. Responding in this way denies peoples’ lived experience. [p337]
The Met is focused on the legality of their actions and not the probity of them. They consider responding to concerns of the public as 'pandering' [p338]. The official narrative that is given when there are incidents are, according to one anonymous contributor, 'always inaccurate' [p338] and this 'undermines faith and confidence' [p338].

The Met doesn't value external engagement, and many feel that things have "gone backwards" in recent years [p338]. An example of how the Met doesn't recognise the benefits of community engagement is related to the Review by the Disability IAG (Independent Advisory Group) who,
told us of being shown newly installed and expensive facilities which were unsuitable and lacked necessary accessibility adjustments. The Met hadn’t thought to consult ahead of time. [p340]
Another example came from a prominent coalition of organisations who recounted,
The Met came to them with an action plan a few days before it was due to be published, not allowing for any shaping of the plan. [p340]
The Review concludes,
The Met has not seen engagement as important, or as an ongoing process which enriches their work and provides important support at critical times, but as an exercise which needs to be ticked off before completing the job. [p340]
Public complaints
If you thought the chances of a successful internal complaint were low, wait to you see the stats for public complaints. The internal misconduct system sees complaints dismissed in around 55-60% of cases. For public complaints it's 90%.
Formal action against the officer is taken in response to less than 1% of allegations. [p342, my emphasis]
The voice of Londoners
This section reiterates the enormous size of the Met,
Every London BCU [Basic Command Units] is at least the size of a county force in England and Wales. Even the smallest BCU is bigger than four other forces...

If a BCU were a county force, it would have its own Chief Constable and an elected Police and Crime Commissioner acting on behalf of that county’s population. In contrast, each BCU is headed by a Chief Superintendent. As we have discussed elsewhere in this report, they do not have full authority over their patch, with New Scotland Yard running BCUs almost as satellites in the name of pan-London consistency. [p343, 345]
The size of the Met has led to a disconnect from the Londoners it serves. As a result,
Their consent can no longer be assumed. Londoners’ voices are missing from London policing. [p345]
Conclusion
The Met sees engagement as a separate function rather than an 'operational imperative' [p346].
The Met cannot afford to squander the valuable contributions of people who want to make policing better. It needs to be prepared to listen, to understand that communication goes both ways and that they have to be humble and learn what they can give. The Met does not always know better, and cannot have all the answers. [p346]
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 17, 2023 8:40 pm

Introduction and context
The Review was commissioned in light of the sentencing of serving police officer Wayne Couzens for the kidnap, rape and murder of Sarah Everard as well as 'other deeply troubling incidents which were undermining public trust and confidence in the force' [p26].
The terms of reference were to undertake a review into the standards of behaviour and internal culture of the Met and make recommendations on actions required.

In particular, the Review was asked to examine the extent to which the standards of behaviour expected of officers, staff and volunteers working in the Met were sufficiently clear, consistent, appropriate and adhered to. [p26]
A review of culture and standards
The intention of the Review was to 'hold a mirror up to the organisation' [p27] and in doing so they have scrutinised areas that have not previously been scrutinised, and spoken to people who have not previously been listened to.
This Review is about “lifting up the stones and seeing what’s beneath them” to help the Met look at themselves as they are, and as others see them. [p28]
From what I've read I think it's fair to say they've done that well.

A police service of many strengths
The Review recognises the expertise, bravery and courage exhibited by many in the Met.
But the management and leadership of the Met and those who hold them to account let down those officers and staff if they obfuscate, deny, cover up or fail to learn from mistakes, failures and wrong-doing.

We know many Met officers and staff uphold high professional standards and good conduct. We know that some of what they do is world-beating. But in order to support them and enable them to stay world-class we have to look at and accept what is wrong, learn from it, change and move forwards. That is the intent of this Review. If we do not identify and change what is wrong with the Met, we put community safety in jeopardy. [p28-29]
A series of incidents and scandals
We are presented with an incomplete list of the scandals that the Met has faced in 2021 and 2022:

- the kidnap, rape and murder of Sarah Everard (March 2021)

- the over-policing of the public vigil for Sarah Everard (March 2021)

- the Independent Panel report on he murder of Daniel Morgan which identified institutional corruption (June 2021)

- the inquest into the murders of Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth and Jack Taylor that found the failings of the Met 'probably' contributed to three of these murders (December 2021)

- the jailing of Deniz Jaffer and Jamie Lewis for taking and sharing photos of Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman after their murders (December 2021)

- the publication of Operation Hotton findings (February 2022)

- the publication of a Local Child Safeguarding Practice Review following the strip searching of Child Q (March 2022)

- the arrest and conviction of David Carrick for over 50 offences relating to 12 women, including 24 charges of rape (December 2022 - January 2023)

The Review recognises that there have been reports and investigations into these events and that the findings are often repeated across them and the Met's response follows a familiar pattern,
That pattern is initially denying that there is a problem, sometimes making misleading or obfuscating statements, and making life difficult for those investigating the issue. Only when external findings eventually show wrongdoing or ineffectiveness by the Met, is there finally an admission of failings. This is usually accompanied by announcements of new actions which the Met claim address the problems and present as if they are fully implemented and effective.

Another part of the pattern is an acceptance of failings only in respect of individual officers, who are termed ‘bad apples’. They are seen as distinct from the majority of officers, who do their jobs well and with integrity. [p30]
The Review uses the kidnapping, rape and murder of Sarah Everard as an example of this pattern. The Met seems to have been 'taken by surprise' [p30] by the fact a serving officer committed these crimes. Very few people were told he was going to be charged out of fear of leaks and when it was confirmed he had used his warrant card and handcuffs to lure Sarah,
a former Met Detective Chief Inspector undertaking media interviews stated that the force “do not view” the murderer “as a police officer.” [p30]
The Review recognises the 'inappropriateness' [p30] of these comments along with the incredibly stupid advice that women were given in the wake of Sarah's murder.
After the sentencing of the officer who murdered Sarah Everard, the Met suggested that women concerned about officers approaching them should ask for sight of warrant cards to prove the officer was genuine. This was despite the fact that the murderer of Sarah Everard had used his warrant card to identify himself as a police officer to her. [p30,emphasis in the report]
In a fantastic refusal to obfuscate or excuse the Met, the Review comments,
Such suggestions were irrelevant to the circumstances of Sarah Everard’s murder. Rather than providing assurance, they missed the point so spectacularly that, for many people, they caused further distress, more upset, and a deepening loss of confidence in the Met. [p31]
The Review then discusses the Clapham Common Vigil. It recognises that the Met had competing interests to balance as well as adhering to COVID restrictions, but even after a court challenge by Reclaim the Streets the Met tried to prevent the Vigil from going ahead. In reality all they did was prevent Reclaim the Streets from providing the management and infrastructure to ensure the Vigil was conducted safely, leaving the Met to manage things themselves. Even after their heavy-handed approach that resulted in multiple women being arrested, they continued to defend their actions.
This included continuing to pursue those issued with Fixed Penalty Notices at the Vigil. They continually appealed the decision of the High Court that found that it was unlawful for them to have not facilitated the original Vigil, despite a judge calling their claim ‘hopeless.’ [p33, my emphasis]
The Review pulls no punches in their assessment of the Met's approach to the Vigil,
The Met failed to recognise the significance of the murder of Sarah Everard, why there was such anger and grief and their own role within that. Their own abhorrence of Sarah Everard’s murder did not extend to a recognition of how badly let down women in London felt by the Met itself, nor the importance of allowing people to express their grief and anger about this. This tendency to focus inwards, on their own feelings and their own officers and not see or accept things from other perspectives is a recurring feature of Met culture...

The Met defended its actions both publicly and to the Review team...

The events around the Vigil illustrate how far culture in the Met had become removed from the founding principles of policing by consent. It took the view that strict compliance with regulations overrides all circumstances even where the law itself allows exceptions and every police officer has discretion around the enforcement of the law. The inability to look at things from other perspectives even in these shocking circumstances are further examples of their lack of humility. [p33-34, my emphasis]
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 17, 2023 10:46 pm

We are finally near the end! We have the Foreword, Summary and Conclusions, and Recommendations left. I'm going to deal with them in reverse order.

Fixing the Met – Recommendations
The Review makes 16 recommendations across seven areas.
We found an organisation that needs not just a series of changes that have been called for numerous times in the past, or even a root and branch set of reforms to meet its responsibilities to Londoners, but a complete overhaul and a new approach to restore public trust and confidence and earn back consent from women, Black communities and the rest of London. [p19]
The Review recognises the scale of the reforms it is calling for, putting them 'on a par with the transformation of the Royal Ulster Constabulary to the Police Service of Northern Ireland at the end of the last century.' [p19]

Cleaning up the Met
Recommendation 1 - make a new independent misconduct process.

Recommendation 2 - embed and enforce ethics and standards across the force, and have consequences 'the public would expect' [p20] for those who breach them.

Recommendation 3 - change vetting procedures immediately 'to guard against those who intend to abuse the powers of a police officer' [p20] and continue vetting throughout officers' careers so that those 'who seek to abuse the powers of a police officer' [p20] can be identified.

Recommendation 4 - disband the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection (PaDP) 'in its current form' [p20]; increase vetting and set higher standards and re-vet all officers currently licenced to carry firearms using the increased vetting standards; revoke 'unequivocally and permanently' [p20] licences for any officer who fails to met the new standards and create a new 'external management' [p21] to oversee the Specialist Training Centre.

Recommendation 5 - give the Commissioner new powers to enable him to reform the Met. One of these powers is to make it easier to strip officers of their pension if they commit criminal offences.

A new offer to women and children
Recommendation 6 - re-specialise Public Protection Teams and establish new specialist teams to deal with rape and serious sexual offences. The domestic abuse service needs to have a more victim-centred approach. These teams 'should be reinvigorated and properly resourced' [p21].

Recommendation 7 - create an 'overarching children's strategy for London' [p21] and as part of that to 'provide training for all officers who work with children to prevent ‘adultification’' [p22].

Building trust with London’s communities to restore consent
Recommendation 8 - centre Peelian principles in its reforms and use them as the 'measures against which all of its policies and practices are tested' [p22].

Recommendation 9 - rebuild consent and apologise for past failings.

Recommendation 10 - 'establish a charter with Londoners on how and when stop and search is used, with an agreed rationale, and provide an annual account of its use by area, and by team undertaking stop and searches' [p22].

A new police deal for Londoners
Recommendation 11 - properly resource frontline services; make BCU Commanders accountable for the actions of officers in their units; and 'recognise trauma and desensitisation in its officers as a corporate responsibility and provide trauma training' [p23].

Recommendation 12 - establish a new borough-based approach to improve transparency and allow residents to challenge the police and hold them accountable.

New leadership and new management
Recommendation 13 - 'bring in new specialist expertise from outside the Met in permanent – rather than advisory – roles' [p23] and then support them to 'overhaul the management of the organisation' [p23].

New oversight and accountability
Recommendation 14 - create a new governance structure 'to oversee and scrutinise the changes needed and ensure full transparency and accountability to Londoners' [p23].

Showing London that reform is working
Recommendation 15 - independent progress reviews should take place in two years time, and again in 5 years time, to ensure that reform is occurring.

Recommendation 16 - key measures against which the reforms are to be measured are laid out.

If sufficient progress is not being made at the points of further review, more radical, structural options, such as dividing up the Met into national, specialist and London responsibilities, should be considered to ensure the service to Londoners is prioritised.
[p25, emphasis in the original]
Summary and conclusions
The Review recognises the 'significant challenges' [p9] that the Met has faced in the last decade. Its budget has been reduced by 18% since the start of the previous decade, and it has lost 21% of its civilian staff, two thirds of its Special Constables, half its Police Community Support Officers and closed 126 police stations. This is at time when traditional crimes such as theft have reduced and more complex crimes such as rape and domestic abuse are rising (or, I suspect, are more likely to be reported). Domestic abuse cases have doubled, rape cases increased fourfold, yet the number of officers investigating them hasn't kept pace.

London is a diverse and growing city but with 82% White and 71% male officers, 'the Met does not look like the majority of Londoners' [p9]. The Met follows the model of policing by consent, requiring 'the Met to both earn and maintain public trust in everything it does' [p10] but confidence and trust is declining, particularly among Black and mixed ethnic groups. The Met's failure to adequately respond to the slew of recent scandals further corrodes the trust that people have in it.

The Review 'has sought to examine the Met’s culture and standards' [p10] and concludes as follows:

1. There are systemic and fundamental problems in how the Met is run
The Met is huge but,
The problem, however, is not its size but its inadequate management. The Met is run as a set of disconnected and competing moving parts, lacking clear systems, goals or strategies. It runs on a series of uncoordinated and short-lived initiatives, long on activity but short on action. [p11]
It's got no real strategic plans, no idea of what sort of skills it needs, poor recruitment and vetting systems, and no central record of training so officers can end up in roles they've not been trained for.

Management and supervision is poor. There's no real process to assess and support officers, either professionally or personally in terms of psychological support. Managers aren't given the time or training to effectively manage their staff.
Under current Met systems it is easier for them to ignore poor performing officers or let those with conduct issues get away with bad behaviour. [p11]
The Met has failed to reflect the population it serves and remains overwhelmingly White and male. The Police Uplift Programme, aimed at improving diversity, has been a 'missed opportunity' [p12].
This isn’t about being ‘woke’ or having politically correct quotas. It means the Met is missing out on the talent it desperately needs to improve its effectiveness. [p12]
2. The Met has not managed the integrity of its own police service
Despite numerous examples of officers abusing the powers given to them, the Met 'did not stop to question its processes' [p12]. Its vetting processes 'are not vigilant in identifying clear warning signs' [p12] and it accepts transferred officers on trust. Re-vetting has been 'perfunctory' [p12] and relies on self-declarations.

Misconduct and complaints are largely dismissed and patterns of behaviour are ignored. Those who call out bad behaviour face retribution.
Behaviour which in most other organisations would lead to instant dismissal or serious disciplinary action – particularly amongst those who work routinely with vulnerable people – is too often addressed through ‘management action’ or ‘reflective practice’. [p12]
3. The Met’s new leadership represent a welcome change of tone and approach. However, deep seated cultures need to be tackled in order for change to be sustained
There are there are 'prevailing and default cultures' that are very hard to challenge. 'Some of the worst cultures, behaviours and practices have been found in specialist firearms units' [p13].

Too much hubris and too little humility
The Met knows best as far as it's concerned. No-one can know what it's like, to be a Met officer. Any criticism can be ignored as being ignorant about the 'unique demands' [p13] placed on them. This stops the Met from recognising its failings and working to improve itself.

Defensiveness and denial
It rejects criticism, believing that 'nothing wrong has occurred' [p13] unless presented with 'incontrovertible evidence' [p13] which is only accepts 'reluctantly' [p13]. 'It does not embrace or learn from its mistakes.' [p13] Even when issues are highlighted time and time again it is incapable of adequately addressing them. 'This has allowed wrongdoing to persist.' [p13]

Speaking up is not welcome
The culture of silence is so pervasive that even when asked to be candid, 'there is a reluctance to speak up.' [p13] This culture is enforced by racist, homophobic and misogynistic bullying that is 'tolerated, ignored, or dismissed as ‘banter’.' [p14]

Optimism bias
The Met is convinced all its problems are due to a few 'bad apples'. 'The Met talks up future actions as if they were already implemented.' [p14]. It approaches actions as a tick box exercise rather than an opportunity for learning and improvement.

‘Initiative-itis’
Rather than create a proper strategy to address fundamental issues, HQ launches short-term projects and campaigns with no clear aims or metrics for measuring their effectiveness.

Elitism: putting frontline policing at the back of the queue
Frontline officers are under-resourced and under-funded, especially in comparison to the specialist units. This leads to the officers Londoners most frequently interact with feeling 'demoralised and let down by their leaders' [p14]

4. Londoners have been put last
By reducing the frontline from 32 borough based police commands to 12 units covering up to four boroughs, 'There are now much weaker connections to long established communities' [p14]. Loss of backroom staff further weakens local policing. This is exacerbated by the fact 'those running BCUs do not have authority over their patch and are not responsible or accountable for the actions of specialist teams like the Violent Crime Task Force and the TSG.' [p15]

5. London’s women and children have been left even further behind
I can't summarise this and do it justice, so I'm just going to quote it all.
The de-prioritisation and de-specialisation of public protection has put women and
children at greater risk than necessary.

Despite some outstanding, experienced senior officers, an overworked, inexperienced workforce polices child protection, rape and serious sexual offences. They lack the infrastructure and specialism which the Sapphire specialist command benefited from. Instead of access to fast-track forensic services, officers have to contend with over-stuffed, dilapidated or broken fridges and freezers containing evidence including the rape kits of victims, and endure long waits for test results.

It is more than six years since the 2016 HMIC report into child protection was described as “the most severely critical that HMIC has published about any force, on any subject, ever.” But the Met’s child protection service continues to have major inadequacies.

The Met’s VAWG strategy rings hollow since its claim to be prioritising ‘serious violence’ has really not included the crimes that most affect women and girls. Those investigating domestic abuse are also under considerable pressures, with unmanageable caseloads and poor support for victims. This has increased the disconnection from Londoners. [p15]
6. The Met lacks accountability and transparency
The Met receives £4 billion of public funding yet it is too often unaccountable to the public it serves.

It has weak structures of governance and oversight. HMICFRS isn't a regulator and can't sanction the Met for failures. It avoids scrutiny whenever possible, refusing to engage with external assessors such as MOPAC.

7. Discrimination is tolerated, not dealt with and has become baked into the
system

Bullying is rampant. 'There is a profound culture across the Met that incentivises people to look, act and sound the same, and a resistance to difference.' [p16] Despite disability discrimination being the most frequent type of claim brought against the Met there's 'no willingness to learn' [p16] from this. Homophobia is 'deep seated' [p16] in the Met and 'Female officers and staff routinely face sexism and misogyny' [p16]. There are 'people in the Met with racist attitudes' [p17] and over-policing of Black Londoners is rampant leading to a 'generational mistrust of the police' [p17] among those communities.
We have found institutional racism, misogyny and homophobia in the Met. In coming to this conclusion, we have applied four tests. We believe these can be applied in respect of homophobia, misogyny and racism but we have applied them in respect of racism below.

1. Clearly not everyone in the Met is racist, but there are racists and people with racist attitudes within the organisation
2. Black and ethnic minority officers and staff experience racism at work and it is routinely ignored, dismissed, or not spoken about. Many do not think it is worth reporting
3. Racism and racial bias are reinforced within Met systems
4. The Met under-protects and over-polices Black Londoners

Tackling discrimination is a legal and operational imperative for the Met. It needs to acknowledge the extent to which racism, misogyny and homophobia are present within its organisational processes and systems in order to move forward. [p17, my emphasis]
8. The Met is in danger of losing its way – consent is broken
The Met has failed to uphold its values and principles. Austerity, changes in crime and changes in societal expectations have 'disfigured' [p17] the Met. It 'has been losing its way and the worst aspects of its culture have impeded its ability to recognise this.' [p18]. The Review concludes that 'the Met has become unanchored from the principles of policing by consent.' [18]

Foreword
I mostly wanted to end with the Foreword because it includes a quote by Reverend Mina Smallman, the mother of Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman that I feel needs highlighting. Bibaa and Nicole were murdered by Danyal Hussein. The police showed little interest in their disappearance and didn't conduct any searches for them. The family ended up searching for them and it was Nicole's boyfriend who discovered their bodies. PCs Deniz Jaffer and Jamie Lewis were sent to guard the scene but rather than treat these women with respect in death they photographed them and shared the photos, calling them 'dead birds'. They were imprisoned for 33 months after pleading guilty to misconduct in a public office. The Met apologised for the actions of the officers and promised to 'rebuild Londoners' trust and confidence in their police service' (a familiar line). They had previously apologised for their handling of the missing persons reports which they had closed rather than investigated. The family rightly criticised the Met, with Reverend Smallman saying,
"Sorry is something you say when you comprehend the wrong you do and take full responsibility for it. Demonstrating that by taking appropriate proportionate action which to our minds is not going to happen."
So, with that context, I'll now cover the foreword.

We begin with Sarah Everard, the catalyst for this Review. It quotes Sarah's mother's victim impact statement.
“There is no comfort to be had, there is no consoling thought in the way Sarah died. In her last hours she was faced with brutality and terror, alone with someone intent on doing her harm. The thought of it is unbearable. I am haunted by the horror of it...I am repulsed by the thought of what he did to Sarah. I am outraged that he masqueraded as a policeman in order to get what he wanted.”
Sarah's murder started the Review and the conviction of David Carrick marked its end. The victims of Wayne Couzens and David Carrick are linked in other ways though,
What Mrs Everard could not have known as she made her statement was that another woman heard her words and was so struck by them that she was moved to call 101 and report that other Met officer as having tortured and raped her and left her for dead. It was only as a result of her call that other women came forward and that same officer was eventually prosecuted. [p6]
Casey recognises the courage of many police officers but also recognises the role can 'attract predators and bullies' [p7]. However,
I am unconvinced that police forces are fully alive to that risk, nor that the Met fully understands the gravity of its situation as a whole. If a plane fell out of the sky tomorrow, a whole industry would stop and ask itself why. It would be a catalyst for self-examination, and then root and branch reform. Instead the Met preferred to pretend that their own perpetrators of unconscionable crimes were just ‘bad apples’, or not police officers at all. So throughout this review, I have asked myself time and again, if these crimes cannot prompt that self-reflection and reform, then what will it take? [p7, my emphasis]
The Met needs to accept the scale of the challenge ahead of it.
As the Reverend Mina Smallman, the mother of two murdered daughters and another victim of Met officers’ crimes, told me: “What we can’t have is that the only reason that people who corrupt the police are taken in hand is by the tenacity of the women and the families they abused.”

Reverend Smallman also told me that: “The strides and the windows that we’ve been to open into this institution have not come about because of the police’s desire to change. It’s come about on the backs and the tenacity of people of colour and women, and that’s not the way we’re going to affect real change. If you’re constantly trying to cover up the cracks then you’re never going to address anything.” [p7-8, my emphasis]
She speaks the truth and I wanted it to be heard.

Casey agrees with her and ends by noting,
ultimately, it is the Met that has to change itself. It is not our job as the public to keep ourselves safe from the police. It is the police’s job to keep us safe as the public. [p8]
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Mon Apr 17, 2023 11:37 pm

So that's the final Report of Baroness Casey of Blackstock’s Review of the Culture and Standards of the Metropolitan Police Service. It has been brutal. I wanted to end with the Foreword because I think it does an excellent job of centring the people who have been harmed by the Met's actions and inactions. It's not just the victims but their families and the wider community. And every time the Met minimises these tragedies they corrode the trust people have in them. The police are there to protect us from bad people. But how can they do that when they are the bad people? They're like an alcoholic who can't admit they have a drinking problem. Everything's fine, it's just a drink to relax after work, no big deal. But it's not just one drink.

The Met doesn't have a 'few bad apples'. They keep relying on that narrative yet do nothing to prevent those apples from entering the barrel and lack processes to detect and remove them quickly. Instead they've been left more than long enough to spoil the barrel. Even if they believed their own narrative they're still doing nothing to protect the public.

They have an institutional problem. Good people are corrupted or worn down by an institution that demands they look the other way to homophobia, misogyny and racism. That demands they racially profile people, that not just allows but encourages sexual crimes and domestic abuse to be ignored and dismissed as 'he said she said'.

The Met isn't unique in this, unfortunately. And I think it raises serious questions about how we hold institutions responsible and force them to reform. Protecting your own and covering up failures is something we've seen time and time again, in organisations large and small. The Catholic Church protecting paedophile priests for decades (let's face it, likely centuries) and the BBC protecting Saville are two of the biggest scandals, but there are smaller ones too numerous to list. How we break this cycle and allow organisations to become open and willing to learn from their mistakes is a challenge that we must face. Simply writing reports and making recommendations isn't enough - if it were the Met would have been fixed years ago. It's this that makes me pessimistic that the Casey Review will have any meaningful impact. It's called out the 'initiative-itis' prevalent in the Met's response to reports and reviews, but nothing I've seen in their reaction to date has made me think they will finally learn their lessons.

Unfortunately, it's going to continue to fall to 'the tenacity of the women and the families they abused' to hold the Met to account. I have no doubt there are other skeletons hiding in its WhatsApp groups and specialist units just waiting to be uncovered. It's the police's job to find them, but I suspect that like so many other areas it deemed unimportant it will continue to fall to volunteers: the victims and their families who demand justice and won't give up. I just wish the Met didn't make them work so damned hard to get it.
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Re: Casey Report finds the Met to be institutionally racist, misogynistic and homophobic

Post by Fishnut » Wed Apr 19, 2023 8:31 pm

Chair of the Police Federation, Steve Hartshorn, has said he accepts the Met is institutionally racist, sexist and homophobic.

Stephen Lawrence was murdered 30 years ago this Saturday (22nd April) and in an interview to mark this anniversary Hartshorn said,
“For me, I personally do accept the findings in the report.”...

He added: “It’s not labelling every police officer as racist, sexist, homophobic – far from it. You just say that these poor practices and certain behaviours must change so we can understand people’s negative lived experiences to get better and improve on that. And that, in turn, should give confidence that policing is part of the community and hopefully start to reassure the public that we are listening.”
While this is definitely progress that should be welcomed, I do find it telling that he reiterates these views are his personal views and aren't representing the views of the Police Federation.
Some police chiefs fear that the rank and file, whom Hartshorn leads, resent the institutional label. Hartshorn said: “Yes, I understand that. That’s why I stressed [these] are my personal views because I know with a headline that PFEW [police federation of England and Wales] chair accepts institutional racism, I could face a very big personal backlash myself.
I find this disappointing. I recognise the fear he has is legitimate, but the headline is still that the PFEW chair accepts institutional racism and the fact he can't speak on its behalf about this speaks volumes.
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