Equality, diversity and human rights
Equality, diversity and human rights are central to the Force providing an excellent service in preserving life and protecting our communities from harm. A fairer society benefits everyone, and the police service has a key role to play in promoting equality and human rights and tackling discrimination.
Promoting equality, and human rights and respecting diversity are the foundations to creating greater community confidence in the police. The Force's equality, diversity and human rights strategy will be monitored by using the equality standard for the police service as a self-assessment of our progress, which will be verified by the Police and Crime Commissioner and open to public scrutiny.
We aim to build a police service that has the trust and confidence of all communities and a service that reflects the communities it serves.
Race Equality Week 2021 (February 1 to 7)
The UK’s first Race Equality Week began on Monday 1 Feb, This UK-wide initiative, launched by Race Equality Matters, aims to unite organisations and individuals to address issues affecting members of the workforce who are of a Black, Asian or ethnically diverse background.
This important week champions that “Silence is no longer an option”, and that only meaningful action will make a difference. We are 100 per cent behind this cause and as a Force work continuously to stamp out racism, bias and discrimination.
We understand there is always more that can be done to facilitate positive change for our residents and for our workforce. The theme for this week is Transparency and Accountability, two concepts which influence everything we do here at Devon and Cornwall Police.
In July 2020, we began a series of meetings with Black, Asian and Ethically Diverse communities in our region, with the specific aim of listening to their concerns and issues.
They were very clear that action was needed to begin a process of change and improvement, and they presented a range of challenges and requests
In response, we have…
- published racial disproportionality statistics
- acknowledged publicly that these figures needed to be addressed.
- developed a Reverse Mentoring project, where people of diverse backgrounds will mentor senior police officers.
- set up an independent Cultural Audit to identify discrimination or unconscious bias within the Force.
- reviewed officer training programmes to emphasise racial equality
- produced films about lived experiences to use as enhanced training tools.
- re-established a support group for ethnically diverse police officers and staff
- increased the diversity of our local reference groups and other scrutiny panels.
- developed an independent scrutiny group for police use of powers, such as stop and search and the use of tasers.
There is now optimism that the relationship between police and Black, Asian and ethnically diverse communities can radically change. We have already begun to act.
There is still a long way to go but we are proud of the progress we have made. We are passionate about transformation and we understand the need to be proactive.
We should celebrate diversity in our workforce and among the residents of Devon & Cornwall and continue to work together to eradicate racism, bias and discrimination.
Working with diverse communities
Over many years Devon and Cornwall Police has been working to recognise the policing needs of individuals and communities from differing backgrounds, which include race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion and belief, disability and sexual orientation. We want all of our staff to deliver a service that meets your needs.
Read the Diverse Communities Team newsletter to find out what we've been up to.
Contact email for the Diverse Communities Team
- In Cornwall (for local DCT issues)
- In Devon (for local DCT issues)
- In Plymouth (for local DCT issues)
- Across the Force (for strategic issues / enquiries)
Independent Advisory Group
We have an Independent Advisory Group to bring together people from diverse communities. The group helps set our priorities and objectives to make sure that we deliver the best service we possibly can.
Geographic reference groups
With regular meetings held across Devon and Cornwall, the geographic reference groups bring people from diverse communities together to hold the local police commander to account.
We are looking at how we can improve the way in which we respond to and deal with hate crime. This will be developed over the next two years.