The Police Superintendents’ Association (PSA) has today launched a film celebrating the difference amongst its members as part of its commitment to supporting diversity within policing.
The film, entitled ‘Together we’re different, as one we serve’, features 12 members of the PSA sharing information about themselves, showcasing their differences in personality and experience, with a unified commitment to policing.
The PSA, which represents superintendents and chief superintendents in 49 forces, is committed to improving and enhancing diversity and equality across the Police Service through its ‘valuing difference’ drive. This has led to its development of a nationally-embedded coaching and mentoring programme designed to support officers from under-represented groups.
Latest figures show that there is still significant work required to ensure the workforce reflects the UK population. Home Office data to March 2020 reveals that just 7.3% of the police workforce are from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background compared with 14% of the UK population and that just 31% are women. The Police Uplift Programme is seeking to make an impact on these figures, with data to December 2020 showing that since April 2020, four in ten new recruits have been female and 10.2% identified as belonging to a Black, Asian, mixed, or other ethnic group.
The association has recently carried out a major project to better understand its membership, with an internal communications drive designed to improve confidence and trust in sharing personal information, so that tailored support services can be developed. Latest figures show that significantly more members are now sharing information on protected characteristics, with 75 members sharing that they consider themselves to have a disability, compared with just 18 in 2019, and 85 sharing that they are members of the LGBT+ community, compared with just 41 in 2019.
Of the PSA’s membership of just over 1300 superintendents and chief superintendents, 26.7% are female and just 5.3% are from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background.
The PSA’s policy-making body, the National Executive Committee (NEC), includes four reserved seats for members representing BAME, gender, LGBT+ and disability to enable the association to have a clear understanding of issues affecting these community groups and President Paul Griffiths hosts a regular ‘valuing difference’ forum for representatives from all national policing bodies and staff network groups to build on this shared understanding.
President Paul Griffiths confirms, “We’re at a critical moment in our Service’s history when it comes to diversity and inclusion.
“For years, this issue has challenged us and we have failed to make the progress that our workforce deserves and that we owe our communities. Only by showing and celebrating the differences within our ranks, especially at the most senior level, can we become a Service that people from every walk of life and every part of our population can connect with and have trust in.
“We need diverse insight, experiences, skills and professionalism in every part of our workforce, and particularly in senior leadership roles.
“By showing just a small shapshot of the wonderful mix of experience, background and personality that makes up our members, I hope we can demonstrate our desire and passion for difference in every form.”