Just a short post today, and then I’m off to take my meds and lie in a darkened room.
Two athletes that I have never heard of got stopped by some TSG officers apparently due to the manner of driving of the car that they were in. For whatever reason (I wasn’t there) it didn’t go at all well and the two athletes ended up being quite stressed by the whole experience.
As is normal (or maybe compulsory) in these circumatnces, heavily edited footage was circulated on Social Media, but quite why they were filming events before they had even been stopped is a mystery to me.
Eventually they were allowed on their way, and they, together with another former athlete who wsn’t there either, excercised their right to complain across Social Media.
The actions of the officers, the evidence from their Body Worn Video and the footage from Social Media were reviewed by officers from the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards – TWICE.
Twice they formed the opinion that there had been no Misconduct by the officers. TWICE.
Now we have the situation where Dame Dick has referred the Force (i.e. the officers involved) to the Independent Office for Polce Conduct for an investigation, even though it has twice been decided that the officers did nothing wrong.
IOPC Regional Director Sal Naseem said the IOPC would look at whether the use of stop and search was appropriate and proportionate in line with approved police policies, adding: “We will also investigate if racial profiling or discrimination played a part in the incident.”
Dame Dick, either personally or via another Senior Officer, then offered a grovelling apology to the athletes for the distress and hurt feelings they had endured at the hands of those poor TSG Officers.
Policing WITHOUT FEAR OR FAVOUR is now effectively dead, certainly in London. No matter how professionally, patiently and courteously the officers on the streets conduct their duties, hanging over their head is the prospect of a Senior Officer somewhere saying “Our officers did nothing wrong, but we’re frightfully sorry and we will have them investigated.”
Last night my attention was drawn to this tweet from Norman Brennan.
BREAKING NEWS; This message has just arrived by DM from a very Senior Serving Officer (Confirmed who he/she is) Quote; “Norman Stop & Search in London is 25% Down Since BLM Violence is up 25% with Knife enabled Injuries Going to go Mental” This is from a caring officer in DESPAIR
Are things really that dire in Londinium, and if they are, why?
I must warn you, this is going to get very numbery, and I need to try out my new crayons. Let’s start by having a look at Stop/Search in London over the last 2 years.
So there we see the beginnings of a potential problem, or is it? There has indeed been a fall in the total number of Stop/Searches, in the order of 13,652 fewer (or 31%). BUT, the May figure was in itself a spike and the numbers in June have more or less returned to normal. I have no idea what, specifically, was going on in London during May, but something has caused a spike. Possibly increased ‘Proactivity’ during a period of Lockdown? I don’t know, maybe one of the serving officers can tell me.
There has been a lot of fuss in the media over the past few days about athletes getting stopped and the Met were accused of Racism and Racial Profiling. How do the Stop/Searches over the past 2 years break down?
Well to be fair there have been a few months when the proportion of Black people stopped and searched has gone up, for whatever reason, but for most of the two year period, when one ethnicity gets stopped nore frequently, so do the others. In the very last set of data, June 2020, there were actually1,428 fewer Black people stopped than Whites. Once again, I cannot provide a reason for that, but that is what the stats show. Racially prejudiced or Profiled? I can’t see any evidence to support that accusation.
How do the figures stack up when it comes to Positive Outcomes? i.e. the number of occasions something was found as a result of the Stop and Search? Any racial bias there?
Interpret that any way you want but when one Ethnic Group rises they all rise, when one falls they all reduce. In recent months the total number of Positive Outcomes for Black people stopped has been lower than for White people.
What does the long term pattern over two years show us?
Before I leave Stop/Search and move onto Crimes, for the sake of completeness and transparency, we may as well include age and gender (there are only 2 genders because that all is the Met provide stats for).
Males are far more likely to get Stopped and Searched than Females, and the 15-25 year olds are streets ahead of any other age group. Not surprising I suppose, there isn’t much chance of having sufficient grounds to Stop and Search many 75 year old Grandmas.
Almost at the end now. How have the Knife Crime stats looked over the last two years?
The red/orange line representing the 2 year average, it is plain that Knife crime in London has slowed dramatically in 2020, way below average. However this could be the results of CoronaVirus Lockdowns, increased numbers of Police on the streets or anything else.
Knife Crime with Injury. A separate set of stats, how does that shape up in London?
Once again, below the red/orange Average line at the moment.
In conclusion, looking at the bald statistics and with no current, personal knowledge of what is going on, it would appear that there HAS been a large drop in Stop Search during June, but only dropping back to the current baseline figure. Why the spike in May is currently a mystery. Has this alleged lack of Police activity caused a massive rise in Knife enabled crimes and Injuries caused by Knives? I don’t think that the statistics bear that out at all. There was an increase in both types of Knife Crime in May 2020, but still significantly below the two year average.
Sorry Norman, on the basis of the Met’s published statistics I cannot agree with your Senior Officer.
Whether ANY of this has anything to do with Black Lives Matter I can’t possibly say, but at least we have the cold, dry stats to form an opinion on.
Inspired by an article relating to deaths in America resulting from contact with the Police, and egged on by at least one former colleague, I decided to accept the challenge and have a look at what the picture looks like in England and Wales.
There’s any number of categories, but I decided to concentrate on 2 main areas; Death by Shooting, and what is loosely termed Death in Custody.
It’s totally fair to state that Policing in the UK and that in the USA follow two very different models, and there are a huge number more firearms held both lawfully and unlawfully in the USA than there ever will be here.
So, I looked at the data and some very inconvenient, pesky facts soon began staring at me from the screen. I can only repeat that the numbers are far, far smaller than the equivalent numbers for America, but a pattern is a pattern surely? The first thing to look at was Fatal Police Shootings.
I don’t really have to say much about these do I? Numerically, the largest number of persons shot dead by Police were White, and the Under 21 sector doesn’t feature at all. The facts would appear to indicate that young black men are not being shot dead in disproportionate numbers by Police. Only one of the above persons was female.
Moving on, Deaths in Custody, what does that look like?
My inescapable conclusion is pretty much the same as it is for Shootings, numerically the largest ethnic group is Whites, and the Youth are nowhere near as highly affected as the Middle Aged. Males outnumbered Females by approx 7:1. However, how do these figures stack up against the Population as a whole. Unfortunately the numbers for shootings are so low that they probably are not worth comparing but the chart looks very similar to the Death in Custody figures, so maybe the percentages are not too different. I could not find a dataset that exactly matched the IOPC data above, and they do not appear to publish that info, but I did find a relevant set of data elsewhere which should give us a reasonable idea as to whether there is any disproportionality at large.
So there you have it Ladies and Gentlemen, White folk are the biggest group here, 85% of Deaths in Custody and 86% of the population, as proportionate as you could possibly get. The Black population do seem to be slightly over-represented, but not the crazy figures I have heard elsewhere.
Numerically you are far more likely to die after contact with Police or shot by Police if you are white. The figures is the figures, the Black population are at a slightly raised risk but this is a complex subject and the reasons for that could be many and various. My best suggestion is that an Armchair Academic with too much time on their hands does a proper, comprehensive study and publish the results without fearing what they might show.
Well, this post didn’t turn out anywhere near the way it thought it might, but in the interests of fairness I thought I’d write and publish it anyway, it may be of interest to somebody.
Hands Up, I confess, I really did think that post 2010 it would be a story about a Coalition/Tory government defunding the NHS in much the same way as they did the Police Service and other Public Sector organisations. Didn’t quite turn out that way.
With the advent of Coronavirus/Covid hitting the country early this year I imagined that it would be a sorry tale of a nation woefully understaffed and unprepared for the pandemic that swallowed us all up. You’ll have to make your own minds up about that. I do have reservations about how Boris the Rumbustious and his Cabinet have handled it, but hopefully that will be fully explored by an Inquiry at some more appropriate time in the future.
I am indebted to NHS Digital for the following data, they are the most recent ones available, only released into the wild last week, although Matt Hancock speaking last week does seem to be in possession of some more up to date, but unpublished, statistics.
An unexpected increase in Doctors and Nurses in the year 2019-2020. Quelle Surprise, who’d a thunk it?
More or less what we’d all like to see I guess, a significant increase in Doctors and Nurses. a small, but valuable, increase in Ambulance Staff and a reduction in Senior Managers and Managers, an overall decrease of about 10%
I don’t profess to know what Staffing Levels in the NHS SHOULD be in order for us to be safe and well-treated, I have to leave that to others, but at least they are on the increase following a, more or less. stagnant period. Like many others, I suspect, I have no problem with my taxes being spent on the NHS.
BUT, where do we stand in comparison with other countries? How many Doctors/Nures per 1,000 head of population (or however it’s counted)? I am grateful to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) for an answer to that question and also providing the means whereby I can share it.
DOCTORS – Surprisingly we do somewhat better than some highly developed countries, but still very much in the bottom half of the table. Although I do take into account that the latest data available appears to be about 2 years old, so we may have improved slightly.
NURSES – We fare somewhat better with our Nurses, slightly closer to the halfway line, but still slightly in the bottom half of the league.
FUNDING – We seem to do slightly better with our Funding, about 2 thirds up the Leaderboard for Spending on Healthcare as a Percentage of GDP, but in all three charts we are consistently falling behind those pesky Frenchies from over the Channel (for example).
In conclusion it would appear that I can’t blame a lack of NHS resources in the face of a Global Pandemic on David Cameron or Theresa May, damn. As I said earlier I hope that there will eventually be a formal Inquiry into the handling of this Public Health crisis by the current government, and I await the outcome with interest.
I do love a good set of numbers. You can prove whatever you want with numbers, but, by themselves, they don’t really lie, it’s what you do with them that forms opinion. Believe me, opinion is truly divided on this one and I’m ready for the abuse and condemnation that will no doubt come my way, my ‘Block’ button is fully serviced and ready for action.
Way back in 2018 Sky News published a rather informative article on the subject, and if it didn’t take so long, I would happily do some work to update it, but as FOI responses, even in normal times, can take anything up to 18 months to come back (yes I’ve had a couple take that long) that will have to wait for a future update.
It has widely been reported for a long time that the black population are disproportionately the victims of murder on the streets of our country, London gets a really bad press for this. What is not shouted quite so loudly is the ethnicity of Murder Suspects. Maybe there’s no political mileage in that. Personally I do, and always have, preferred the reality, be it good, bad or indifferent.
Sky News submitted FOI requests to every Police Force in the England, Scotland and Wales requesting some stats on their murder victims and suspects.
Apparently, back in 2018 London was 60% White, yet only 35% of Murder Victims were white and 24% of Murder Suspects. However the figures for the country as a whole suggest that maybe London is not completely representative, and maybe that’s not actually a surprise. In the rest of the country white folk made up 86% of the population, 89% of Murder Victims and 81% of Murder Suspects, suspects and victims being very much in line with the population as a whole.
I’m completely happy to acknowledge that Sky News is my source for the data in the following charts, however, as it was obtained under the Freedom of Information Act it is, by default, in the Public Domain.
When it comes to ages of those concerned, it really does look like London has a problem emerging (has emerged?). 18% of the population of London is under 21, but 32% of the Murder Victims (all races) were under 21 and 45% of Murder Suspects. It looks to me as though the youth of London have running rampant. Yes, I acknowlege that this data is 18 months old, but personally my impression is that the situation has not improved, but I will try and get updated info.
Unsurprisingly possibly, males accounted for 81% of the Murder Victims in London, and 94% of those accused, and yet again the largest group was Black Males.
Other figures for areas of the UK possibly more closely represent the population as a whole. In the rest of the UK Males comprised 49% of the population, 69% of the victims and 92% of those accused.
So there we have it, or at least how it was in 2018. I’ll do my very best to obtain up to date and current info, and publish a new post to update this one. The activists are quite right, Black Lives do Matter, I believe it’s unpopular to say it but All Lives Matter, but London seems to be completely out of step with the rest of the country. I fully accept that Black Lives Matter everywhere, but it seems to be an inescapable fact that in London Black Lives are mainly being taken by Black People. Is it racist to say that? I don’t think so. It’s my interpretation of the figures. I will make it a priority to obtain up to date info for London at least, the rest of the country seems pretty well balanced. Not only do I not think it’s racist to point it out, I also think that ALL agencies on both all sides of the argument need to sit down and thrash this out once and for all, and that includes the Mayor of London, whoever he is. This CANNOT be simply nothing more than a tool to bash the Police and other agencies with. Young Black Males are dying, killed, mainly, by young black men (or at least that’s what the figures say to me) but no doubt there is an Academic somewhere out there who will point out where I have gone wrong. I have said it many times before, I don’t care what colour the victims or suspects are the killing SIMPLY HAS TO STOP. No more dancing around trying to score points. STOP THE KILLING.
Finally, thank you to my good friend @obbsie for the following two montages of some of the murder victims in London over the last few years. he did send me a third one representing last year but as it contains names and other personal details I have elected not to use that one.
It isn’t very often that I rely on the Daily Mail for my source material, but on this occasion I was delighted to find Mainstream Media highlighting an issue I had identified and pointed out months ago.
The full headline reads
A third of police officers will have less than three years’ experience by 2023 as forces scramble to replace officers who have left since 2010
Well now, we all know why officers have been “leaving” in droves since 2010, the legacy of Camoron and Dismay.
I won’t replicate it here, you can follow the link and see what I made of it, together with the odd pretty chart. I often get told that I am being “negative” because I don’t believe that Boris’ 20,000 extra recruits will save the day. My estimate was that we need to recruit 40-45,000 to make an overall increase of 20,000 due to the numbers leaving, at approx 7,000 per year. The Mail believes that we need to recruit 53,000 overall to achieve that goal.
One thing that is for certain, this is the direct result of the actions and policies of Camoron, Dismay and their respective governments, INCLUDING Boris, who consistently voted in favour of the cuts, and never forgetting the Tory MPs who actually cheered when the vote was passed totally stuffing the pay of Police, NHS and the like. They actually cheered.
I have said it before and I will no doubt say it again, the Conservatives under Camoron and Dismay inflicted untold damage on the Public Sector. Come the General Election the population were so blindsided by Boris and Brexit that they voted the party of cuts back in with an increased majority. Let that sink in. As far as they are concerned their previous actions have been validated.
I have tried my best not to write about #CoronaVirus, but I have failed. Too much has changed, some things might never be the same again and some things are just totally unimaginable.
I’m not going to get involved in the arguments about PPE for NHS staff, much has already been said and I will that debate to people who know better than I, although I fully understand ehy the NHS personnel are wanting it.
I recently went to see my GP, I got through the telephone inquisition and was granted an appointment. When I arrived I was allowed through the ‘Fort Knox’ airlock and into the building. I was the only patient there. The Waiting Room, normally heaving at 9:30, was empty apart from me. Within seconds my doctor appeared and called me in. I was confronted by a man, dressed head to toe looking like he was just prepped to carry out a heart transplant.
I wasn’t there to discuss anything vaguely similar to CoronaVirus, but I do understand why he was so attired, and I don’thave a problem with it per se, but it did get me thinking.
There he was, gloved, gowned and masked to the nines, just in case I was infectious. As I said, I don’t have the slightest problem with that, but, how many Police Officers are out on the streets every day interacting with the public on any number of levels, with what protection exactly? Some very horrible people have already been arrested and imprisoned for spitting or coughing over Police Officers, PCSOs and others. What protection did they have? Every day, somewhere in the UK, a Police Officer will be rolling around on the ground with a violent suspect. Almost every day a Police Officer someehere will be giving First Aid to a stabbing victim or similar. With what protection?
I fully realise that Police Officers, and many others, can’t actually do their jobs dressed up like Robocop or whatever, but, they go out there and they do it anyway because that is the mark of our brave ladies and men, and we should be proud of them and grateful that they do it. Instead a small but vociferous section of our population moan like drains because someone has had their beach barbecue put out or someone else has been moved on from a park bench, and, heaven forbid, possibly given a ‘ticket’.
The Corona regulations and the accompanying restrictions on all of our movements have been in force for long enough now. Everybody should know what they are and how they affect them. Break them at your peril but stop bitching about being caught and ‘told off’. Nowhere near everybody gets a ticket, most just have things explained to them and sent home. If you can’t take that I have no sympathy. Occasionally the Police Officer may be less than 100% polite, but again, I can see why that may be the case. I’m not saying it’s OK, but just think what else they may have had to deal with that day, or how many before you had had to be moved on, then be grateful that you have not been dealt with by one of our European neighbours. These are far from ‘Normal’ times.
Finally, our government announced yrsterday, a £60,000 ‘Life Insurance’ payout for NHS workers dying as a direct result of CoronaVirus. Even my daughter, who works for the NHS, questioned why they were being singled out. Any number of other Emergency Service or Key Workers are extra vulnerable to CoronaVirus. Are they any less worthy? I’m not totally sure where I stand on the principle of the £60,000 payout, but I’m quite clear in my mind that it is potentially unfair to only grant it to NHS workers, many others are also vulnerable and with less protective equipment.
My my, times have really changed in a very short space of time, and I have no idea when, if ever, things will return to normal.
It’s been one of those weeks for Policing. Having got bored of attacking the Police for being over-zealous in enforcing the government’s lockdown, a certain sector of the public have moved on and resurrected Police Racism again.
In London two incidents flooded the Twitter waves
The first related to an operational matter whereby a disinterested observer just assumed that there was a bit of Institutional Racism going on and took to Twitter without waiting to establish the facts.
Just witnessed a whole squadron of @metpoliceuk pulling over cars on tower bridge. Only pulling over cars driven by black men. White drivers sailing through. I'm not surprised but I am disgusted. Shame on our policing system and its enduring institutional racism. 😡 pic.twitter.com/vjDQs7NG4w
The second was a so-called journalist who took a photo in a park and immediately cried racism. When a Local Councillor got an explanation from the Met and passed it on, the author still didn’t have the decency to retract or delete her Tweet.
Black guy being told to leave Clissold Park by 2 police officers while white guy practises handstands nearby. pic.twitter.com/xGjm6Ybz6Y
Imagine my delight when I found a couple of good news stories that received nowhere near as much traction as the so called ‘Racism’ tweets did.
Firstly, a young WPC in Rochdale (yes, I did type WPC, no I won’t apologise for it). Any OCU Commander should be extremely proud to have her on under his/her command. An absolute credit to the Police Service, and a thoroughly deserved Commendation.
On some of her days off she went to the supermarket and bought shopping for them using her own money which she then delivered.
She also baked scones for them, cleaned their kitchen, did their washing and made their beds as well as cooking them a meal amongs other household tasks.
She chose not to tell anybody at work what she had done. A true credit to her profession, and certainly worthy of recognition in an age when it’s fashionable to bash the Police.
Finally, and certainly not least, today I discovered Chaz Singh (@PlymouthChaz) who had tweeted to tell the story of how he had been stopped by the Police, breath tested, and allowed to carry on his way (because it was negative 😂😂)
Now Chaz is a man who is quite obviously not white, middle class British. He decribes himself as #thatmanwiththeturban. I immediately loved his attitude. He was open about the fact he had been stopped and the reasons for it. Not only that but he went on to publicise the fact and his positive reaction to it, even including the Chief Constable and the Local Paper in his Tweet.
If only more people were willing to publicise their positive experiences like Chaz did. Far too many just want to bitch and moan, or even, and much worse, just make shit up. Tweeting about things that either didn’t happen or the author has no personal knowledge of the event they are negatively publicising. The job of the Police is difficult at the best of times, virtually impossible during the current crisis, and still people seek out opportunities to knock them
Don’t be like Jessica and Rikvah, be like Michelle and Chaz
Before I get carried away and rant TOO much I would just like to say that I actually hope that I am wrong.
Following the downfall of the disastrous Theresa May and her infamous Cuts we inherited Boris Johnson as PM, almost by default as nobody else seemed very willing to challenge him.
In he came, full of promises and “Let’s Get Brexit Done” (that’s Boris for Strong and Stable) and quicky won over the public with all his rash promises. First he promised 20,000 ‘extra’ Police Officers. This is something that would appeal to all right-minded people. Why would we not want more Police Persons?
Following swiftly on the heels of the 20k pledge we had a promise to build 40 ‘new hospitals’, well, maybe 6 if we’re lucky.
Hold your breath, here comes another one. 50,000 ‘extra’ Nurses.
We currently ‘lose’ about 7-8,000 Police Officers per annum due to Natural Wastage, so are these 20,000 ‘extra’ officers ‘extra’ to what we currently have, effectively replacing those who will leave in the coming 3 years, or are they truly additional, in which case how the hell can we recruit and train more officers in 3 years than we ever have done before? 40,000 recruited and trained over a three year period when Cruella and co have already been instrumental in dismantling our training infrastructure.
The above chart clearly shows that never, since 2005 if at all, have we ever recruited more than approx 9,000 officers in a single year, so how will we cope with circa 40,000 across 3 years with a reduced capability?
40 new hospitals? Where is the money coming from for those? We can’t even get the two hospitals that Carillion left half-built finished. How will we pay for them, who will build them?
50,000 extra Nurses? Boris has now backtracked and that has been downgraded to 31,000. I don’t know enough about the NHS but I suspect that they will also struggle to recruit an extra 31,000 Nurses in short order.
Fast Forward, we have now had another General Election and Boris and the Conservatives now have a workable majority in Parliament.
Call me cynical, but maybe now the mask has slipped.
I’ll leave it for someone better qualified to commentate on the NHS promises, but I will address the Policing issues.
The government recently announced an increase in expenditure on Policing of up to £15 Billion. Gosh, that’s a lot, where is it going?
Is it just me or has the word ‘extra’ been omitted from the first item? And I do assume that all of these officers, 20,000 or 40,000, ‘extra’ or not, will have to either be graduates or sign up to an Apprenticeship programme?
If you want to know where the remainder of the £15 Billion is coming from, look no further than your Council Tax Precept. PCCs have been invited to raise the Policing Precept to pay for extra officers. Not such a generous government offer after all maybe?
But at least the new look government hasn’t put any conditions on the increased funding.
Kit Malthouse, Policing Minister, said the public “need to see results” for the £1.1 billion extra that police have been awarded for 2020/21. He said that they must slash their backroom staff to put more officers on the frontline and improve their use of technology to combat the surge in violent crime.
This will be tricky as those cuts have already been made.
“Lives are being lost. Families are being devastated. Communities are being torn apart. We must bring an end to this violence. This is the public’s money and they need to see results for their investment,” said Mr Malthouse.
“So it’s only right the Government holds them to account and we expect to see measurable outcomes from this generous settlement.”
This view is totally right and proper but does he not realise that is what the Police WANT to do? They certianly don’t need League Tables and Powerpoint Charts.
With Blair Gibbs, that well known Horseman of the Policing Apocalypse, inside Number 10 as one of Boris Johnson’s SPADs it will only be a matter of time before numerical targets are reintroduced into Policing.
The Times has already reported, on 5th January, that the Government are planning on bringing in a Target Culture again.
My opinion on that is predictable
Policing is not an activity that realistically lends itself to numerical targets. They encourage malpractice, corruption and provide nothing beneficial whatsoever except a warm glow in the occasional OCU Commander (but not all)
All in all it seems that this version of a Conservative government hasn’t really changed much from Cruella’s regime, just a few more platitudes and empty promises.
Finally, NONE of Boris’ promises regarding Policing even begin to address the dwindling numbers of PCSOs and Support Staff, both culled under Theresa May.
Every person who voted Tory in 2019 did so knowing full well what the Conservatives had done under Theresa May. Most of Boris’ current Cabinet voted IN FAVOUR of those cuts and even cheered at the results of some of the votes.
Empty words and vote-winning rhetoric or truly the beginning of better times? We shall see.
A recent set of College of Policing Board minutes makes the bold claim that the Police Service will be recruiting 53,000 new officers over a three year period.
This presumably includes Boris’ famous 20,000 officers.
My problem is this, since 2005 (at least) the Police Service has never recruited more than 10,000 new officers in a single year. After 10 years of #Cuts, where the hell are the facilties for training all these officers? How good will their training actually be? Can we actually attract 53,000 new recruits, especially given Graduate and Apprenticeship Entry looming?
Para 4.2 of the attached minutes makes this bold claim, but does anyone actually believe it?