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Ethnic minorities urged not to join the Met

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Black police officers have launched a recruitment boycott of the Metropolitan Police Service.

According to national newspaper reports, the Metropolitan Black Police Association will urge members of ethnic minorities not to join the Met in a campaign that will include full-page newspaper advertisements.

In a statement, the Metropolitan Black Police Association said it would "totally boycott" all Met recruitment drives.

The statement said: "The Metropolitan Police under the current management and supervision of the Metropolitan Police Authority has made the working environment for its existing black staff a hostile environment where racism is allowed to spread and those who challenge it are either suspended, told to shut up or subtly held back in relation to career development.

"The boycott and our active discouragement will continue until the Metropolitan Police leadership and the Metropolitan Police Authority convince us they care about race and equality for its workforce and the people of London."

This announcement comes on the same day that London mayor Boris Johnson is set to announce an inquiry to investigate racism and faith issues in the Met.

Reacting to the announcement, Sir Paul Stephenson, deputy commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service, said: "I very much regret the Met Black Police Association's decision and we must find a way to work through this together. Much has been achieved since the Macpherson report [which made recommendations to combat racism in the police] was published [in 1999] but I am not complacent and recognise more must be done not only by us but also with the Met Black Police Association's full support and engagement.

"The Metropolitan Police Service now has three times as many black and minority ethnic officers as 10 years ago and approximately 20% of new recruits to Metropolitan Police Service police training come from a black minority ethnic background.

"I welcome the Metropolitan Black Police Association's intention to hold its inquiry because I believe it will assist in making progress and provide the re-assurance the Metropolitan Black Police Association is looking for."