• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Following the publication of the Macpherson Report, the police service has been accused of being 'institutionally racist'. Has this accusation been a help or a hindrance to police relations with minority ethnic communities?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Following the publication of the Macpherson Report, the police service has been accused of being 'institutionally racist'. Has this accusation been a help or a hindrance to police relations with minority ethnic communities? The Macpherson report was published in 1999 amidst problems of racial inequality and a lack of faith in the police amongst minority ethnic communities. There is an ongoing debate on whether Macpherson's report was a help or a hindrance with regards to minority ethnic relations and the police; it is this dispute that the essay shall examine. To begin with the paper will look at the problems, which existed prior to Sir William Macpherson's publication and which led to the publication of his report. It will then proceed to examine the failures of the Scarman report, in order to look at both the prior problems and failures regarding the 1981 Scarman publication and see how these two sets of factors affected the way in, which minority ethnic communities responded to Macpherson's report. The essay will then continue on to highlight two main areas of recommendation made by Sir William Macpherson and judge whether or not these were successfully carried out and what effect, if any they had on the minority ethnic community relations. Finishing with the introduction of the acts, which were inspired by and followed the Macpherson report, and discuss the results, which they had on police, minority ethnic relations. The problems in Britain regarding racism prior to the Macpherson report and the failure of the Scarman report to remedy these, could have been said to have meant that police and minority ethnic communities were instantly bettered just by the mere publication of Macpherson's article. ...read more.

Middle

Such changes as directed by Sir William Macpherson in his report have been shown to have, pushed up the number of racist incidents that are now reported to the police. For example The CPS Racist Incident Monitoring Scheme Annual Report 2001-2002 found a 28.5% increase in the number of racist incidents reported compared to that of the previous years prior to the macpherson report. Sir David Calvert-Smith (2002, Director of public prosecutions) attributed the rise in reported offences to, 'More victims now having the confidence to come forward knowing that the CPS and the police take these offences seriously'. Such a rise in the number of victims of racism coming forward demonstrates that the changes as initiated by the 1999 Macpherson report have in fact helped minority ethnic opinions of the police, as they are now happier to report such crimes. However despite the fact that indeed the reporting of racist crimes has risen, the satisfaction of minority ethnic communities with the police is still markedly lower than that of white communities, indicating that racism still exists and attitudes toward the police have not altered entirely. Dr Andrew Pilkington's overall findings of his research in 2001 indicated that white victims expressed a total satisfaction rating of 65%, whereas black and Asian victims only expressed a satisfaction rating of 41.2% and 38.1% respectively. Also the rate of which these reports are being substantiated is still very low at 2% and of these only about 20% result in either criminal or disciplinary proceedings (G. Smith 2000:6 cited in Reiner, R. ...read more.

Conclusion

T 2003). It is argued that legislation such as the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 and the Criminal Justice Bill 2002 will disproportionately affect ethnic minorities because of strongly engrained institutional racism (Bourne 2002; Bridges 2001). Also the anti-terrorism act 2001 likewise is argued to be discriminatory, and is perceived to be eroding many basic rights on the grounds of national security. Therefore despite the moves and acts being passed as a result of the Macpherson report the current and ongoing context of what is happening in society and the legislation being used to deal with this, will mean that police relations with ethnic minorities will always be fraught and problematic, even if all of Macpherson's recommendations were carried out. To conclude Macpherson's publication and allegation of institutional racism did help with regards to at least alerting the public and the authorities to a problem. Encouraging positive moves to change such as introducing improvements in the overall handling of racist cases and promoting the recruitment of minority officers. However far more needs to be done in order to regain the minority communities faith in the police force, which was so shattered by the accusation of institutional racism. There needs to be further changes with regards to the organisation of the police, less on the superficial aspects such as just recruitment, more focus on for example promotion and why ethnic minorities are reluctant to enter the police service. Police relations with ethnic minorities will never be fully repaired due to societal factors such as terrorism, immigration etc. But the Macpherson report did help the police relations with minority communities in many ways, but there is far more to be done in order to eradicate what he himself labelled 'institutional racism'. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification essays

  1. Outline and account for the disadvantages experienced by minority ethnic groups in British society.

    In 1994 28 per cent of Pakistanis and Bangladeshis and 26 per cent of Afro-Caribbean's were unemployed (Social Trends, 1995). Afro-Caribbean women. Within afro-Caribbean families and communities, women have traditionally been seen to occupy an influential role. They usually work full-time, often assuming responsibility as bread-winners in what is seen as typical Caribbean family form, the matrifocal or woman-headed family.

  2. Is the Underachievement of Ethnic Minority Children due to a Racist School System?

    have a much more in-depth view into the reasons for ethnic minority underachievement in education. This is because my questions are open-ended and produce qualitative data, giving me the chance to hear what the respondent really feels and thinks. Advantages of this method is that I will have a higher

  1. Identity Paper

    There were often times where we were at the fast food drive-up windows and my mother was asked the same question Ellen J. Reifler expressed, "Is this for a boy or a girl?" iv However, we would take the "boy toy" and the "girl toy" and combine them together in whatever game we were playing.

  2. What Are The Main Ways In Which Racism Affects Peoples Health And Well-Being In ...

    Within the United Kingdom, ethnic minorities represent approximately 5.5 per cent of the population (Commission for Racial Equality 1999); most minority ethnic groups live in socially and economically deprived areas, experiencing limited access to quality services. Poverty is a fundamental disadvantage afflicting many ethnic minority groups; amongst the diverse population

  1. BTEC NATIONAL LEVEL 3 ...

    But since then, a healthy ? and not so healthy in some quarters ? has raged on about the appropriateness of the term, with camps for and against it rising up. The rights and responsibilities of individuals in society as citizens: rights give all citizens in a country guarantees about

  2. Black Male perception, of Secondary School Attainment and Opportunities. "Explore reasons for the academic ...

    A complex history of racism within the United Kingdom has created a system that promotes the unequal distribution of opportunities between racial groups. The inherently inferior living conditions and low expectations that many Black students face cause them to perform worse in school, creating a vicious cycle of underachievement.

  1. This briefing paper is designed to inform the Metropolitan Police Of the true issues ...

    (home office p.) Police?s response to rape Rape is said to be one of the most underrated offences .The police?s treatment towards rape victims has been critiqued over the years. It appears that the police disregard how hard it must be for a victim to report the crime as their response is said to be quite negative.

  2. Identify and briefly describe the discriminatory practices for each case study

    young man called David who has spina bifida and is a wheelchair user. He lives in a residential unit for people with severe disabilities. He also attends a local youth centre one evening a week. The residential unit say that David is very quiet and understanding; they allow the residents

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work