Ethnic police recruitment failing

ALL efforts to recruit police from ethnic minorities are failing in Suffolk, the Evening Star can reveal today.Only one black officer has been recruited by Suffolk Police as one of 58 probationary staff since April.

ALL efforts to recruit police from ethnic minorities are failing in Suffolk, The Evening Star can reveal today.

Since April only one black officer has been recruited by Suffolk Police among 58 probationary staff.

Acting chief constable Gillian Parker said the ratio had not come about through a lack of trying.

She said: "We are trying extremely hard to attract people from a whole variety of communities, and there are a number of initiatives in Suffolk and in conjunction with neighbouring forces – too many to mention them all.

"The outcomes don't reflect the effort that has gone in to attract people. It's not that we are not trying."

She said an article about how to become a police officer had been printed in a magazine aimed at Asian women, and careers fairs had been used as opportunities to recruit.

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Officers from the Metropolitan Police also visited Suffolk to see the initiatives in action, in a bid to improve their own recruitment methods.

The Met, which investigated the death of black 18-year-old Stephen Lawrence after which recruitment targets were introduced, faces one of the toughest challenges.

Only 3.3per cent of its officers were black or Asian, according to Home Office figures in 1999. It was ordered to increase this to more than a quarter, in line with London's population.

For some areas, the challenge appeared still tougher.

Cumbria has an ethnic minority make-up of less than half of one percent, but was being told to recruit 1pc black or Asian police officers.

Weblinks

www.policecouldyou.co.uk

www.suffolk.police.uk

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