‘A force which breeds violent misogyny is not a force which can even begin to protect women and girls’ declares Ruth Davison, chief executive of female-focused British charity Refuge, who dumped 1071 rotten apples outside of New Scotland Yard on January 20th.
‘1071 bad apples, How many more?’ States the blackboard next to them, 1071, being the number of Metropolitan Police officers facing alleged domestic/sexual abuse offences.
Including the suspension and arrests of ex-officers Wayne Couzens and David Carrick, myself and women across the UK are outraged and distrust the police as a whole, rightfully so. How can we report a crime when there’s a chance we’re questioned by our offender?
Five women told The Guardian how their perceptions of the police have worsened since the scandals involving serving officers surfaced with 65 year old Alexandra McTeare stating: ‘I have always perceived the Met police to be a racist and misogynistic organisation…However, events and inquires over recent years have made me realise how inherent it's attitudes are’.
Couzens had faced at least two previous accusations of indecent exposure that had not been properly investigated, he later raped and murdered 33-year-old Sarah Everard in March of 2021.
Sarah Everard was simply walking home.
Given the rather apt nickname of ‘Bastard Dave’ by co-workers for his violent tendencies, in January of 2023, Met officer David Carrick plead guilty to 4 more charges of rape on top of 24 already, utilising his position of authority to further manipulate and silence his victims for over 20 years.
During this time the police received 8 warnings about his behaviour.
Lest we forget the Charing Cross Police Station WhatsApp messages that got leaked because they weren’t only misogynistic, but racist too. The highly discriminatory and sexualised messages were published by the police watchdog, warning ‘the incidents are not isolated or simply the behaviour of a few bad apples’ implying that Alexandra’s thoughts aren’t without evidence.
The last time a minority group lacked confidence in police was the abhorrent handling of the murder of 19-year-old Stephen Lawrence. Stephen, a black British teenager was stabbed to death by a gang of white boys in South-East London. The incompetency of the Metropolitan Police’s handling of this case included failure to administer first aid upon reaching the scene and failure to arrest suspects, which were highlighted in the 1999 Macpherson Inquiry.
The Macpherson inquiry included 70 recommendations to subject the police to greater public scrutiny after concluding that the Metropolitan Police was institutionally racist. They included monitoring the levels of satisfaction felt among ethnic minorities in regard to police service and racial awareness training.
In Jonathan Freedland’s opinion column on the Metropolitan Police, he suggested an inquiry like this into the misogyny and I for one support that. If that involves dissolving the Metropolitan police force, then I say we start again and eradicate this perversion of justice.
It is not all police, but it is too many.
(Photo cred: Refuge, 2023)
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