Wednesday, January 25, 2012

#London Rife With Police Corruption - Brutality And Racism


I mentor excluded, marginalised, vulnerable teenagers in North London. I work for an organisation that enables them to achieve educational qualifications and provides pastoral care and support.

These teenagers encounter obstacle after obstacle in their development; abuse, neglect, poverty and systems that appear destined to fail them. I’ve worked as a mentor for three years and I have no doubt that in relation to young black males, the police are an equally obstructive obstacle.

My father was a victim of racist treatment by the police when he arrived in England from Lebanon in the 1970s. I will never forget the raw anger and emotion in his voice as he described his experiences. My parents lived through the Broadwater Farm riots in the 1980s and educated me on the wider context of police racism.

I grew up in Edmonton and a significant number of my friendship group were black. We were subjected to dehumanising and disrespectful stop and search exercises on a regular basis. These were not intelligence-led exercises, nor were they random stops. They were deliberately targeting young black males because of their race. It was no coincidence that when I went out without my black friends, I had significantly less contact with the more