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    Great Britain Fires 20 out of 800 Police Officers Accused of Racism

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    Each year around 12 percent of racism allegations against the police in the UK are upheld, and just 2.5 percent of those officers found guilty are dismissed from the force.

    MOSCOW, December 30 (Sputnik) – Police officers in Britain who are found guilty of racism have been allowed to stay in their jobs, the BBC reports, despite public announcements about the implementation of training and reforms designed to tackle discrimination in the force.

    "I don't think the police want to face the prospect of having to sift out the bad apples," one victim of police discrimination told the BBC. "The police need to get tough. They need to start dealing with the stereotypes," Don Lorenzo continued, who was awarded damages in 2011 after being racially abused by West Midlands Police as they arrested him.

    According to the report published on Tuesday, which is based on data from 48 UK police forces released after a Freedom of Information Request, more than 6,600 complaints of racism have been made since 2010 against British police officers. Of those, almost 800 were upheld, and consequently just 20 officers were dismissed from the force.

    However, Deputy Chief Constable Alan Goodwin of the Association of Chief Police Officers defended the figures: "Around 300 officers per year end their careers because of misconduct and, proportionally speaking, officers have a much higher chance of being dismissed where it is felt that there is a case to answer for racism," he told the BBC, adding that "there is no place in the police for racists."

    The Metropolitan Police was revealed to have dismissed 10 of the 20 police officers forced to leave the service. These included an officer who had verbally abused a train inspector after his friends were not allowed to travel free of charge. In most cases, however, police authorities used other means of dealing with offending officers, including issuing warnings, offering advice and scheduling counseling.

    The British police force has made efforts to tackle racism in its ranks since the Macpherson Report was published in 1999, as a result of the failure of police to catch those responsible for the racially-motivated murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence in 1993. The report made 70 proposals to tackle the "institutional racism" it identified in the force, including one that "racist words or acts proven to have been spoken or done by police officers … should usually merit dismissal."

    However, despite declarations by the British government that 67 of the 70 recommendations have been "implemented fully or in part," problems of racism are still reported to persist in the force. On the 20th anniversary of Stephen Lawrence's death last year, the Metropolitan Black Police Association, which represents ethnic minority members of the police force, said it still believes the force is institutionally racist, citing practices such as the disproportionate stop and search of people from minority ethnic groups.

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    racism, british police, United Kingdom
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