Londoners must be at the heart of police reform, says Green AM

Londoners should be at the heart of police reform, said London Assembly member Caroline Russell during Mayor’s Question Time today.

In the new Police and Crime Plan, released today, the Mayor states he will ‘work with the next Commissioner to drive the cultural change and reforms needed so that the trust and confidence of all Londoners in the Met Police can be restored’[1].

However, Caroline argued reform must be led by Londoners, so they can contribute to establishing what policing by consent looks like in a diverse city like London. She also highlighted the importance of consulting on reform itself, not just consulting on the Police and Crime Plan.

Londoners are losing more trust with every next revelation, with polls showing that half of Londoners are unhappy with the Met at end of Cressida Dick’s term [2].

Caroline argues that this issue goes beyond simply needing to change the Commissioner, it requires Londoners setting out what they need from their police force service.

Green Party London Assembly Member Caroline Russell said:

“This is not just about who leads the Met, but about the need to reset the whole relationship between Londoners and the people who police us.

“People I speak with are shocked and horrified by the continuing stream of disgraceful revelations about the culture in the Met and behaviour of some officers.

“We know that so many Londoners, Black Londoners, LGBT Londoners, women, and many others have lost trust and confidence in a fundamental way.

“The revelations have kept coming, and rather than welcoming them as evidence of rooting out the bad apples, and even the bad barrels, the communication from the Met has felt defensive.

“We obviously need any new Commissioner to take up reforms, but Londoners need a voice in shaping these reforms and changing the expectations ahead of the Commissioners appointment.”

[1] The Mayor has published his Police and Crime Plan today

[2] Half of Londoners unhappy with Met at end of Cressida Dick’s term, polls show, 16 February 2022:

Full exchange can be watched here: