London Mayor Sadiq Khan has ordered the Metropolitan Police to begin recruiting officers who can’t speak or write English, and who may have a criminal record in order to meet diversity quotas.
A 2014 pledge to have 40% of the force be represented by ethnic minorities by 2023 has fallen well short, with just 17% of officers being from ‘diverse’ backgrounds.
Summit.news reports: Matt Parr, the head of the organization responsible for inspecting British police forces, told the Telegraph that London, “which will likely be a minority white city in the next decade or so, should not be policed by an overwhelmingly white police force.”
In addition to the optics of a largely white police force being wrong, Parr said it was also, “operationally wrong, because it means that the Met does not get insight into some of the communities it polices and that has caused problems in the past. So we completely support the drive to make the Met much more representative of the community it serves than it is at the moment.”
That drive has however led to officers being hired who struggle to even write up basic crime reports.
“They are taking in significant numbers of people who are, on paper at least, functionally illiterate in English,” said Parr, adding that the Met was “recruiting the wrong people” and that the diversity push had “lowered standards.”
However, Parr also noted that it was a good thing that the Met was “taking a risk” by hiring young black men who may have criminal records.
David Spencer, the head of the think tank Policy Exchange and a former Metropolitan Police officer, said that the diversity drive had lowered standards.
“There is a tension between volume, quality and diversity and something has to give,” Spencer explained. “Someone has to ask what is the most important of those three things and you have to be really careful because once you have recruited someone they are possibly going to be there for the next 30 years.”
As we previously highlighted, police resources in London are so stretched that major department stores have given up on calling them to catch shoplifters.
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