The Met, which was placed under special measures last year, needs to address key issues still at hand (Picture: Getty Images)
The Metropolitan Police still has ‘so much further to go’ in its work uprooting racism and misogyny, the mum of two murdered sisters has warned.
Mina Smallman’s daughters Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry were stabbed to death in London while out celebrating a birthday in a park in in June 2020.
Former Met constables Deniz Jaffer and Jamie Lewis were jailed in December 2021 for sharing photographs of the bodies of the two women on WhatsApp.
The incident came before the force was placed under special measures last June.
Mina Smallman, the mother of Nicole Smallman, speaking outside the Old Bailey (Picture: PA)
Ms Smallman said a lack of acceptance and transparency continued to persist in the Met, and that both good and bad instances of policing should be highlighted more often.
Her comments come ahead of the launch of the Alliance for Police Accountability (APA) on Thursday, where she is due to speak.
The alliance will see black community organisations and esteemed individuals from across the UK working collaboratively to fight racist, misogynistic and homophobic policing.
Asked whether any progress had been made under Met Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley, Ms Smallman said: ‘There has been an increased seriousness over vetting, for example, and I know they are working towards a better system of care for victims of domestic abuse and rape, but there is still so much further to go.’
The sisters were stabbed to death ina park in London after attending a birthday party (Picture: PA)
Ms Smallman said it was a ‘huge disappointment’ that Sir Mark refused to accept there was ‘institutional racism’ in the force.
The chief constables of both Police Scotland and Avon and Somerset Police used the term to describe their forces in May and June respectively.
‘I will keep on having conversations with him [Sir Mark], because it isn’t about semantics, it’s not about throwing your colleagues under the bus, it’s about acknowledging and understanding as a white person why there is a lack of trust and saying, “I can now see it from your point of view”,’ Ms Smallman added.
She said greater transparency and a more open disciplinary procedure was needed within the Met and police forces nationwide.
However, Ms Smallman also stressed the importance of praising the work of officers when necessary to help rebuild confidence.
When contacted, a spokesperson from the Met told Metro.co.uk: ‘Culture change will be delivered across the Met to embed the values of policing by consent.
‘We accept Baroness Casey’s findings and we’re responding to them. We’ve let down the people we’re supposed to protect – Black, ethnic minority and LGBT+ communities, disabled Londoners, and women – and we haven’t fixed the cultural issues that have led to that.
‘We will build a strong culture focused on delivering for London, maintaining high standards and learning from others.
‘We will regularly review how we use stop and search, overhaul how we investigate officers and staff accused of breaching standards and reform armed policing.’
More can be found at the Met’s policing for London plan.
Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at email@example.com.
For more stories like this, check our news page.