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Graham Colley, Lib Dems PCC candidate for Kent has welcomed Louise Porritt's commitment to reforming "stop and search"

April 18, 2021 1:06 PM
By Graham Colley

Police ImageGraham Colley, LibDem Police and Crime Commissioner candidate for Kent and President of LibDemLawyers welcomed Luisa Porritt's manifesto commitment to reforming "Stop and Search ". Luisa is the LibDem candidate for Mayor of London

Graham said one of the 10 principles of policing ascribed to Sir Robert Peel was:

"Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence"

Graham continued: "The disproportionate use of Stop and Search creates a lack of trust of the police among some communities - especially black communities. Grievances over policing tactics - especially, as you are far more likely to be stopped and searched if you are black than if you are white, destroy trust and as a result are counter-productive. It perpetuates the view the police service is still institutionally racist. If policing is going to be effective in every community - the problem needs to be addressed.

The Chief police officer should responsible for ensuring proportionate use of this power and should account for its use.

To those who say that Stop and Search is needed to prevent knife crime, I would say, I have not seen the evidence that proves that this is the case. Knife crime should be tackled through its causes-the best way to deal with the fire is to prevent it starting in the first place."

Luisa Porritt's manifesto states "Liberal Democrats understand that the police are held back from building trust with certain communities because of some of the culture and practices of the Metropolitan Police. A Black person is nine times more likely to be stopped and searched by the police than a White person. Under Section 60, where officers can stop and search people without suspicion, a Black Londoner is almost 50 times more likely to be stopped than a White Londoner.

Facial recognition technology also disproportionately and unfairly impacts people from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities. Liberal Democrats would end the use of Section 60 suspicionless stop and search and block the rollout of facial recognition technology."



Note to editors:

Graham Colley and Luisa Porritt were fellow candidates in the European elections in 2019