Progression of black and minority ethnic officers and staff

Sharing good work and piloting approaches to support recruitment and career progression

The BME progression programme 2018 is working nationally to improve the recruitment, development, progression and retention of black and minority ethnic (BME) officers and staff.

The programme is also sharing valuable lessons from positive action initiatives to improve how the police service values inclusion and difference.

BME Progression 2018 programme lead, Superintendent Manjit Thandi, said:

“We are now sharing the good work that forces are doing in this area across the service and the next step will be to put in place further initiatives that can be evaluated so we can be confident they will bring benefits in supporting recruitment and career progression.

“The programme has carried out the first survey of all BME officers, issued positive action guidance to forces and provided individual force-level reports containing key local and national data to support their planning activity to improve the recruitment and progression of BME officers.”

The team recently delivered positive action sessions for BME, LGBT and female officers interested in the Fast Track Programme for serving police constables. The pcs accessing this programme will progress to inspector within two years and receive leadership development input to help them become the leaders of the future.

Results from the National Assessment Centre, which concluded in March, show that 20 percent (12 out of 61) of the successful cohort were from a BME background.

This compares to approximately five per cent representation across the police service as a whole and is a significant improvement to previous programmes such as the High Potential Development Scheme where BME representation was much lower.

The BME programme is also piloting a Professional Development Action Learning Set programme for BME officers.

The programme is aimed at increasing representation at sergeant and inspector ranks in the short-term.

The intention is to learn from the delivery and evaluations of a pilot being conducted in Merseyside and to develop a ‘training package’ that can be delivered by other forces across the country. The pilot will be conducted in six phases over the next 12 months.

The programme is also supporting other initiatives to improve diversity and inclusion in the service. We are shortly piloting a programme for LGBT officers which we are running in partnership with Stonewall and the Superintendents Association. This will be evaluated to build on the evidence base for development of future positive action initiatives.

The BME Progression 2018 programme will also:

  • assess the use of Unconscious Bias as a tool in identifying and overcoming potential bias in recruitment and progression
  • expand the existing mentoring programmes in policing
  • develop Releasing Potential programmes for sergeants and inspectors

Read more about the BME programme.

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