Equality and diversity are important. People across all communities want the police to fight crime while having confidence that their needs will be understood and respected.
The Government’s landmark Race Disparity Audit makes it clear that whilst we have made significant progress across a range of measures relating to crime and policing, for many people from black and other minority ethnic backgrounds their experiences and expectations fall well short of what is acceptable. We are committed to reducing and eliminating these disparities through our continued reforms to policing.
Decisions about frontline policing, how resources are best deployed, and the effective management of the workforce are for Chief Constables and democratically accountable Police and Crime Commissioners. They are best placed to make decisions with their communities based on their local knowledge and experience.
The Association of Police and Crime Commissioners and National Police Chiefs’ Council make it clear in the Policing Vision 2025 that that the link between communities and the police will continue to form the bedrock of British policing. The vision also highlights the increasing diversity and complexity of the communities police serve, and the need for more sophisticated responses to policing challenges.
The National Police Chief’s Council has agreed a new Diversity, Equality and Inclusion strategy which is expected to be published in July. The strategy will be accompanied by three toolkits; on workforce representation; working with partner agencies; and working with diverse communities, which will provide operational advice to forces.
The College of Policing, as the professional body, has published the Code of Ethics which includes a clear statement on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion for all those working in policing. It also published guidelines on modernising neighbourhood policing in March 2018. This year’s HMICFRS effectiveness report recommended that forces review their approach by October 2018 against these standards.
The Government takes the issue of police wellbeing very seriously and has invested in programmes which offer help directly to officers. In July 2017, the Home Secretary awarded £7.5 million from the Police Transformation Fund over 3 years to pilot and, if it is successful, fund a dedicated national service to help provide enhanced welfare support.
We await the publication of the final version of the Traveller Movement report which is expected to follow the summary report published in June and will work with policing partners to consider its findings.