Police chiefs want affirmative action


We need positive discrimination to meet race targets, say police chiefs
By David Harrison
(Filed: 03/04/2005)

Police applicants from the ethnic minorities should get automatic preference over white candidates with the same qualifications for posts in the service, according to senior officers.

A growing number of chief and deputy chief constables want the law changed to legalise "affirmative action" in recruitment to help forces meet Home Office targets for ethnic-minority officers.

Opponents warned that affirmative action would lower standards and provoke a ‘backlash’ among white recruits

One chief constable told The Telegraph: "Many forces are nowhere near meeting their targets so radical steps need to be taken to ensure that police forces reflect the communities they serve. Affirmative action is the way to achieve that."

Julie Spence, the deputy chief constable of Cambridgeshire, who will argue the case for affirmative action at a conference in Peterborough this month, said: "It takes two years to get new legislation through so we have got to do this now if we are going to get the diverse, representative workforce the Government says it wants.

"If handled sensitively and professionally it will have a very positive effect on policing in this country."

Opponents warned last night, however, that affirmative action would lower standards and provoke a "backlash" among white recruits who would resent being turned down for jobs because of their colour, and among ethnic-minority recruits who wanted to be judged solely on their ability.

Mrs Spence, who has been in the police for 27 years, said it was a "myth" that affirmative action would reduce standards. "The evidence shows that standards go up when more jobs are opened up to women and ethnic minorities," she said.

The Government targets were set after the inquiry into the murder of Stephen Lawrence, who was killed by five white youths in 1993, described the Metropolitan Police as "institutionally racist".

The Home Office wants 7.7 per cent of the 150,000 officers in England and Wales to be drawn from ethnic-minority backgrounds, mirroring the working population in each area, by 2009. Senior officers admitted, however, that despite recent improvements, the target would be impossible to meet in many areas, including London, Manchester, West Yorkshire and Leicestershire, where there is a high proportion of ethnic minorities.

Affirmative action is illegal under racial equality laws but the proposal for legislative change is backed by a growing number of senior police figures, including Sir Ian Blair, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Ronnie Flanagan, Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary and former head of the Royal Ulster Constabulary, and Peter Fahy, the Chief Constable of Cheshire.

Pressure for change is also mounting from minority groups within the force. Last week the National Black Police Officers' national executive voted to lobby for affirmative action.

The issue has divided police officers at all levels. The Police Federation, which represents 140,000 officers up to the rank of chief inspector, warned that legalising affirmative action could lead to lower standards.

Ch Insp Jan Berry, the federation's chairman, said: "The danger is that, for some chief constables, achieving the targets will become more important than getting the right people.

"And even if standards aren't reduced there would be the perception that ethnic minority recruits only got the job because of their colour - and that perception will affect working relationships."

So, it appears that having the police force represent the community in its ethnic makeup is more important than having an effective police force... :roll:

I'd like to see the "evidence" that Julie Spence appears to be quoting from - all the studies I've seen regarding positive discrimination result in a reduction in standards - it's simple common sense that if you recruit people on a basis other than ability, the average ability of your recruits goes down. Or perhaps she's one of these people that believes that diversity necessarily improves performance? Or maybe the fact that I believe that people should be recruited on the basis of ability alone makes me some kind of evil right-wing reactionary in her eyes? I dunno!

Stoatman - C+P edited for copyright issues etc.

Guys if you're going to c+p News items, can youkeep an eye on copyright issues please?

You evil right-wing reactionary, you. Your post is a direct attack on the entirely Correct policy of establishing arbitrary 'targets' which will enhance the joyous Social experience of New, Controlled Britain.

So what if they're chosen on the basis of political prejudice? By definition they're Correct.
Mr Dizaei cited the success of the "50-50" policy in Northern Ireland, where priority was given to Catholic recruits to make the police force more representative of the population. "People predicted an outcry over that but it hasn't happened," he said.
Yes it has, it has just been ignored, and I would live to know what the criteria for something to be judged a sucess is, because this is certainly not how I and many like me view this process.
You might want to note that ethnic minority candidates would only be preferred if they have the same qualifications as comparable white candidates. It's not as if they'd put having a good ethnic mix over the quality of recruits.
petermtm said:
You might want to note that ethnic minority candidates would only be preferred if they have the same qualifications as comparable white candidates. It's not as if they'd put having a good ethnic mix over the quality of recruits.
That doesn't make it any better - they're still discriminating on the basis of race, and I guarantee 100% that it won't just be used with equally-qualified candidates - there will be some leeway in its use, which will result in a slightly more qualified whitey getting turned down.
Unfortunately thats what your getting, is Policing by government targets. The ACPO officers are panicing because the ethnic minority targets are one of the main criteria for judging whether a force, will pass or fail it's annual inspections.
The government run the police. Whatever the Home office says they have to implement there ideas, whether it works or not!!!!
There has been a lot of advertising towards ethnic minorities to join, unfortunately they are not interested, so what automatic preferance is going to do , God knows.
Whenever I see this argument, it seems that the reasoning the people in favour of it are using is that

standards go up when more jobs are opened up to women and ethnic minorities
These jobs are already open to women and ethnic minorities! And discriminating against whites can only lead to a lowering of standards, when a poorly qualified black or asian is hired instead of a white bloke, of whatever qualification - which this will eventually lead to. Sure, you'll get your fair mix of ethnics with M.A. B.Sc Ph.D and all that after their name, but the chances are that they'd get the job anyway. So all this policy would do is allow the school dropouts who happen to have a darker skin tone into the Police. Good news for the criminals - the cops will be even more incompetent.

It's bloody disgraceful that it is even being contemplated discriminating against white people. After all Bliar's talk about stamping out racism - this. I shouldn't really be suprised, should I? I particularly like the term "positive discrimination" which makes it sound all respectable.
There was lots of positive discrimination by the KKK, for whites, wasn't there?

Also, more disturbingly, perhaps, this will undoubtedly lead to a backlash against ethnic minorities, and the BNP and other racist prick groups like them will be among the first to jump on the bandwagon.

All the more reason to make sure Bliar and Co. don't get back in at May.
It's all c0ck.

White recruits aren't joining the Old Bill in any great numbers either.

All this farting about introducing new this and that , makes me tired of screaming at the keyboard

Want to get more recruits, from all ethnic groups?


That about sums it up. I remember about fifteen years ago someone doing a survey of the Police effnic composition, and concluding that the reason why there were so few Indians in any force was that the average Indian school/university leaver regarded the salaries as derisory.
You might want to note that ethnic minority candidates would only be preferred if they have the same qualifications as comparable white candidates. It's not as if they'd put having a good ethnic mix over the quality of recruits.
Then why have they cited the NI model, because I can assure the members that is NOT what happens here. We have had candidates refused a place who have scored 86% in the recruitment "competition", when others who have scored 36% have been accepted. Standards do and will fall, and they are low enough as it is.
NO NO NO......

The only way to go on this is a totally level playing field with ALL candidates considered on their qualifications and personall qualities.

To this end all reference to colour, race etce must be kept from the initial selection panel. Although at interview it will be apparant!!

Must admit though, something has to be done re the salary issue. Something that in all honesty, for me with a family to support does stop me from rejoining the force!!!
This policy would be, plain and simple, racist!

How would you feel if you'd wanted all your life to join the police and then found out you were turned down because you were not of the correct colour.

This will fuel the support for the BNP etc, give racists more ammo for their cause, undermine morale of serving officers, and probably give rise to law suits against the police.

If the govt want to reduce racism, then dont encourage prejudice in good people.
How is service in the Police Force sold to a new recruit?
You might want to note that ethnic minority candidates would only be preferred if they have the same qualifications as comparable white candidates. It's not as if they'd put having a good ethnic mix over the quality of recruits.
As others have pointed out, your wrong, dead wrong. Living and working in the US where these laws are "normal," you will always have preferential treatment for what the "higher ups" are looking for. Doesn't matter if they are minorities, gay, women, etc.

In the US, federal grant money for police depts hinge, quite often, on the diversity of the ranks. The more minorities promoted, the more money the dept can get. Therefore, unqualified and not as qualified applicants, get promoted over others.

Happens every day, in every state, of the US...
Very odd this, the fact is that most forces have actually lowered their standards for all applicants over the past few years to the point where it's now easier that ever to join the Police. The problem simply is that not enough people from ethnic minorities want to join in the first place and there are a whole range of reasons for that. As was mentioned in an earlier post, many Asians look down on the job as it's perceived to be a "low -status" occupation in the Indian sub-continent. For that matter I've yet to meet a Jewish copper and nobody complains about that! (Funnily enough I never met a Jewish squaddy either?). I'm certain that any healthy, moderately intelligent person who meets the present (low) criteria would be accepted on their first or second attempt in any force in the UK regardless of their ethnic background. Theres no need for "Positive Discrimiation" in any shape or form, if you're good enough then you'll get in, simple as that! :roll:
Thanks Juvenal

They really have no idea do they?

Want to attract more coppers? Start building MQ's for Coppers , or allocating some of the ones we have 'going spare' "Guffaw"

Then sell the accomodation , pension, benefits , health insurance for them and their NOK if they get it, institute it if they don't, knock the pay up a bit, and they'll join , don't you worry.

Sell the benefits not the job.
A certain new Chief Copper in a certain Northern Force (the prick called it SERVICE) called a press conference and gave the Home Office warming statement about how he wanted more people of Asian and West Indian descent in his force as it did not compair with the racial mix in his area. One of his PC's then pointed out to him (at the Press Conference) that West Indians and Asians actually had a higher percentage in the force than they did in the community. He added that the largest ethnic minority in the area was Afghan, and they were not represented at all. Exit one angry CC.
PTP, from what I remember the average deputy manager at Maccy D's gets more than the average Plod. The rozzers definitely deserve a pay rise but where to fund it from? Speeding camera fines? Defence cuts? Not throwing away tens of millions on 'initiatives' that achieve precisely jack all except enriching some Alex Masterley-types?...

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