New community conversations to rebuild trust in local policing

Hosted by local community groups, a series of open and informal conversations are taking place in Hackney to help ensure communities are at the heart of policing.

These community conversations focus on topics such as disproportionality, racism, misogyny, homophobia, stop and search and more. Offering an opportunity for local people to share their views, experiences and suggestions for improvements with the police leadership team.

The fifth and latest event in the series took place last week at Morningside Community Centre with local residents taking part in the conversation. 

Residents were able to express their views and have questions answered by Sir Mark Rowley Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service, Hackney Detective Chief Superintendent James Conway, Mayor of Hackney Philip Glanville and Cllr Susan Fajana-Thomas OBE, Hackney Cabinet Member for Community Safety. 

These conversations are held regularly for local residents in the heart of Hackney's communities, led by the Metropolitan Police Service in partnership with local community groups and supported by Hackney Council. 

Sir Mark Rowley, Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, said: “We know we need to reset how we operate and connect more with communities to rebuild trust. There have been numerous reports, most recently the Casey Report, which shows that we’ve got some things dreadfully wrong which has really affected trust in communities. We need to repair it and turn it around; and that’s what we are determined to do. We have to move our policing to have communities at the forefront. These conversations are critical and all about how police and communities work together, because when we do that we are at our best"

Cllr Susan Fajana-Thomas OBE, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Regulatory Services

These conversations are really important and support the continuous work we are doing to improve policing in Hackney. It was especially great to have Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley and BCU Commander James Conway join us at the latest conversation because it shows residents how serious we are about delivering on our commitments to better policing in Hackney. We are willing to do the work and ensure the people who can help influence real lasting change are in the room. These conversations are fundamental to our leadership and the overarching plans we have to radically improve policing in Hackney.

Cllr Susan Fajana-Thomas OBE, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Regulatory Services
 Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney

I’m pleased to see the progression of these community conversations. This latest conversation, led by the Commissioner, really focussed on the three key themes he outlined: high standards in policing, less crime and more trust. And we are doing the work to deliver on those themes here on the ground in Hackney, most recently launching our Local Policing Scrutiny Panel with MOPAC which is specifically looking at holding the police to account for the use of powers such as stop and search. 

We are also continuing to invest in our young people, through our partnership work we can show a 19% reduction in young people being involved in the criminal justice system. This is something I am incredibly proud of because it shows we are not just reducing crime or gang violence, but we are making sure young people don’t get involved in those issues at all - that is the child centred, safeguarding first approach we want. While we are seeing real progress, that doesn’t mean we can be complacent when it comes to either safety or the work to rebuild trust and confidence.

Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney