In the third and last of my connected blog posts, it’s sad to think that back when I was 23 I started my dream job as a Police Officer and 11-years later racism and homophobia would drive me out.
I remember joining the service for what I believed it stood for, in the public good.
Back in 2001 when I joined the police I wasn’t naïve to not think it didn’t have its fair share of problems especially after the labelling of institutional racism, but nothing on the scale of what we are witnessing in these present times … Covering-up of Hillsborough, Leaking to Journalists, Stealing Dead Babies Identities, Smearing the Family of Stephen Lawrence, Deaths in Custody and so forth.
I could go on, but you only have to pick up a newspaper to see what I mean.
Now I know many organisations have problems, but not many uphold the law and have the power to take away people’s’ liberty. That’s why, The Office of Constable is unique.
Having served in Britain’s two biggest Forces at the relevant times, it would be very hard for someone to label me anti-police. One, because I am not. The other, is in the first sentence.
I am saddened just how much the police are being battered at the moment with allegation after allegation, like the public dispute I have been in with the Met Police.
Is all this justified? Yes, of course it is.
As I said on ITV Daybreak last week, I’m not going to slate every officer out there doing an often dangerous and difficult job. However, this shouldn’t mean our standards slip.
As a British citizen, it is my civic right and some may say duty to challenge any form of wrongdoing within the police to safeguard its future of policing by consent.
The Metropolitan Police Service for example not just appears, but is out of control especially when it comes to accountability. No one and this includes politicians, can reign the institution in.
It is often said a few bad apples are undermining the service, but my view is that these are being allowed to rot the lot.
I genuinely believe that only the public through saying enough is enough, can force change upon the likes of Scotland Yard. If we don’t, we are in danger of going down the same road as some of those countries we often criticise as having a second-rate police service.
I read an article this morning which focused on the Met, and hit the nail on the head.
It quoted, Sir Bernard … “Hogan-Howe has called for a “total war on crime”, and this militaristic language implies that brute force is the appropriate means with which to address crime and the social problems that underlie it.”
We are a democratic country, and not a police state (yet).
Don’t get me wrong, I never signed-up to help old dears cross the road (although, I often did) – but equally, I didn’t to abuse the powers attested to me on behalf of the public for some political or ideological gain.
What happened to the basic premise of being there, when needed?
Catching the bad guy, not becoming him!
I am saying many of the things police on-the-ground cannot, because of restraints.
The Leadership of the Police are running the service not only down, but like their own mini-states in a military way. This doesn’t engage communities, but alienates them.
We shouldn’t forget those who have actually fought in wars, for our freedoms today.
The Chief Officers of Police need reminding that, we still police by consent in the United Kingdom. Something much more important than them, and which the public decide.