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Record on London Police Highlights Tradition of Misogyny and R…

LONDON — London cops mechanically made jokes about rape and exchanged racist messages, according to a report from England’s official police watchdog that detailed a trend of misogyny and bullying within the power, the most recent blow to an embattled provider that has confronted intense scrutiny in fresh months.

The findings mirrored a troubling tradition inside the London Metropolitan Police Provider, in line with the file launched Tuesday by means of the Impartial Place of job for Police Habits, the police watchdog, which made greater than a dozen suggestions to take on the issue. It mentioned the episodes it detailed weren’t remoted ones or the paintings of a couple of “unhealthy apples.”

The file comes amid rising requires larger scrutiny of the power after the abduction, rape and homicide of Sarah Everard, a 33-year-old London girl, by means of a Metropolitan Police Provider officer in March 2021 highlighted broader concerns about misogyny within policing, and violence in opposition to girls and women.

“The habits we exposed was once disgraceful and fell neatly underneath the factors anticipated of the officials concerned,” Sal Naseem, the police watchdog’s regional director, mentioned in a statement, including that the “problems aren’t remoted or ancient.”

Mr. Naseem mentioned that the watchdog welcomed present efforts to root out problematic habits and attitudes from the police power, including a continuing formal independent review of the standards and culture within the service, however “extra is needed.”

“Our suggestions center of attention at the known cultural problems and goal to make sure that those that paintings for the power really feel protected with their colleagues, and that communities really feel protected with the ones whose activity is to give protection to them,” Mr. Naseem mentioned.

The Metropolitan Police Provider mentioned in a statement that the movements of the cops in central London that the file detailed do “now not constitute the values” of the power.

The file was once the results of findings from a sequence of investigations into the Metropolitan Police Provider that exposed proof of bullying and discrimination inside its ranks. They started after a grievance alleging that an officer had intercourse with a inebriated individual at a police station, however quickly grew to surround many extra problems.

The investigation resulted in September after a overview of 1000’s of messages between officials, in line with the file, which incorporated many who had been “extremely sexualized, discriminatory or referred to violence” and which have been most often described as “banter” by means of officials of their protection.

The file additionally detailed repeated racism and xenophobia, with messages between officials that mocked the Black Lives Topic motion and non-Christian religions, insulted other people with disabilities and incorporated homophobic feedback.

The investigations had been initiated in 2018, lengthy prior to the nationwide outcry over policing that adopted Ms. Everard’s dying, however have since taken on new resonance.

The proof exposed within the file incorporated a sequence of messages between officials in WhatsApp teams, with extremely offensive and brazenly racist statement, in addition to disparaging feedback about girls.

In a single alternate, two officials mentioned home violence, with one officer writing about girls, “Knock a hen about and she is going to love you. Human nature.”

In any other alternate, a male officer advised a feminine officer, “I might thankfully rape you.”

The file mentioned that “the informal alternate and blasé nature of this communique signifies a tradition the place officials had been relaxed to make those feedback, suggesting it was once a part of a establishment relatively than an exception to the norm.” It added: “the messages looked to be despatched with out concern of repercussion or end result.”

The file introduced 15 suggestions geared toward tackling the underlying cultural problems within the power, which incorporated recommending that it “publicly decide to being an anti-racist group with a zero-tolerance coverage towards sexism, misogyny, bullying and harassment.”

Bas Javid, the deputy assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Provider, said in a statement that he was once “indignant and disillusioned to look officials keen on sharing sexist, racist and discriminatory messages,” and it was once transparent extra paintings had to be executed to get rid of bullying and discrimination from the power.

“The movements of those officials between 2016 and 2018 had been unacceptable, unprofessional, disrespectful and deeply offensive,” he mentioned.

A number of officials have already been matter to misconduct complaints because of the investigation. Fourteen had been put underneath understand that they had been being investigated, and two officials had been pushed aside for gross misconduct and placed on an inventory that bars them from long run employment with the police, in line with the watchdog. Two others resigned and several other others confronted disciplinary motion.

Sue Fish, the previous leader of Nottinghamshire Police in northern England, who has been a vocal recommend for finishing misogyny inside the police provider, mentioned the file “graphically portrays the poisonous racist and sexist tradition which is endemic in policing.”

She mentioned police forces must make it transparent that there’s 0 tolerance for such habits, make it transparent to officials that their interactions on social media are matter to the officials’ code of habits, together with when off responsibility, and grow to be vetting and recruitment.

“This file specializes in the Met, however it may well be mirrored in nearly any police station up and down the rustic,” she mentioned.

Some lawmakers have known as for the resignation of Cressida Dick, the pinnacle of the Metropolitan Police Provider, together with Diane Abbott, an opposition Labour lawmaker who represents an east London district, in a post on Twitter.

However the govt has thus far stood at the back of Ms. Dick regardless of the turmoil of the final yr.

Priti Patel, Britain’s house secretary, who’s chargeable for overseeing policing nationally, in a observation condemned the officials’ habits as “sickening” and known as at the police provider and London’s mayor to put into effect the suggestions “once almost imaginable.”

Yvette Cooper, the opposition Labour birthday celebration’s lawmaker chargeable for policing, mentioned the movements had been a “overall shame.”

“The essential paintings police do approach perfect requirements will have to all the time be maintained and abuse will have to be rooted out,” she said in a statement.

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