Police were criticized today for suggesting that women “stop a bus” if they are concerned about being stopped by an officer following the murder of Sarah Everard.
Both Scotland Yard and government ministers have been accused of being “deaf” to violence against women and girls after a series of suggestions about what action the public should take if they fear an official is acting illegally, reports PA.
Read more: What are your rights if the police stop you on the street?
Other advice has also been heavily criticized, including yelling at a passerby, running to a house, knocking on a door, or calling 999.
Patsy Stevenson, who was arrested at a vigil for Ms. Everard in the days following her murder, said the advice would be “almost ridiculous if it weren’t so disgusting”.
She told the PA news agency, “I have a feeling that they are just clinging to straws because the advice is not relevant. It’s like a distraction because, first of all, in this situation you can’t just stop and call a bus or a taxi or something.
“Can you imagine the mistrust people have when they have to protect themselves from the police in this way? That’s shocking. “
Labor MP Bell Ribeiro-Addy said on Twitter: “We want to know what the Met is doing to address the deeply rooted issues of violence against women within the force.
“This completely ridiculous advice shows that they still don’t take it seriously.
“And you wonder why trust is lower than ever before?”
The Met stressed that the advice was given for specific and rare scenarios that humans might find themselves in.
Police said: “It is unusual for a single plainclothes officer to get involved with someone in London. When this happens, and it may for a variety of reasons, in cases where the officer wants to arrest you, expect other officers to arrive shortly afterwards.
“However, if this does not happen, and you are in an interaction with a single police officer and are on your own, it is perfectly reasonable that you seek further confirmation of that officer’s identity and intentions.
“If after all this you feel in real and imminent danger and you don’t believe that the officer is who you claim to be for whatever reason, then I would say you need to seek help – yell at a passerby , in … a house, knocking on a door, waving down a bus or, if you are able to do so, calling 999. “
Ruth Davison, General Manager of Refuge, said: “The Metropolitan Police have consistently responded to incidents of gender-based violence by asking women to change their behavior.
“Time and again, women are given the responsibility to protect themselves.
“It’s just not good enough. Police forces across the country must adapt to a profound shift in attitudes towards women and eradicate the misogyny that is at the core of these failures.
“Refuge is eagerly awaiting the Met’s strategy to combat violence against women and girls. Women deserve better. “
The survivors’ trust
The Survivors Trust is the largest umbrella organization for specialized rape and sexual abuse services in the UK.
Your services work with victims and survivors of all ages, genders, forms of sexual violence, sexual abuse, and sexual exploitation, including assisting partners and family members.
If you have been a victim of a sexual offense, you can call the free helpline at 08088 010 818.
The Met has vowed to make the streets safer for women and girls as it investigates whether Couzens committed more crimes before the murder.
Police also said people stopped by an officer can ask to hear or speak to their radio operator and should ask questions about the whereabouts of colleagues; where they come from, why they exist and why they stop or talk to them.
It promised to stop using plainclothes officers after the Old Bailey heard that Couzens, who was off duty and in no uniform, was using lockdown rules and showing his warrant to falsely arrest Ms. Everard during the kidnapping.
Police Minister Kit Malthouse said police forces across the country would have to work “much harder” to regain public confidence as a result of the case.
But he joined several other politicians and police officers who opposed mounting calls for Met Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick to step down, telling Sky News: “She is a dedicated and talented and dedicated police officer who has taken the Metropolitan Police to ever higher levels Driving due diligence standards and improving and fighting crime. “
More stories from where you live can be found at Near you.