Police officers in England and Wales must log information about all the motorists they pull over to make sure that they’re not racially profiling drivers, a new reviewed has recommended.
These reforms have been issued by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) in an attempt to ensure that drivers from minority ethnic groups are not stopped disproportionately more than white motorists.
This change to police working processes would require officers to record the vehicles that they are pulling over, in a similar manner to how they already log who they stop and search on the street. This comes following claims from the HMIC that police bosses don’t understand the impact that consistently stopping certain people can have on community relations.
This is disappointing because getting it wrong can lead to resentment, anger and, in time, a loss of trust in the police.
Inspector Stephen Otter, who fronted the research into the HMIC’s report stated: “Too many police leaders and officers still don't seem to understand the impact that the use of powers to stop and search people can have on the lives of many people, especially young people and those who are from black and minority ethnic backgrounds,” writes the BBC.
He continued: "This is disappointing because getting it wrong can lead to resentment, anger and, in time, a loss of trust in the police."
A public survey of more than 7,500 drivers found that 47 per cent of respondents had been in a vehicle that had been pulled over by the police and confirmed that more motorists from ethnic minorities were pulled over than white drivers. While eight per cent of the white respondents claimed that they had been stopped, this figure rose to around 12 per cent of those from ethnic minorities.