A new Met Police scheme to ‘keep women safe’ misses the point entirely

London Police
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The Met Police still don’t get it. Or at least that’s what people are saying about their latest scheme to rebuild women’s trust since Sarah Everard’s murder. The force’s new rules mean that plain-clothes cops must prove their identity as police to lone women.

But there is a problem. Sarah Everard was murdered by a real cop who was in active service. So it’s not altogether clear exactly how this new initiative would make a real difference.

Killer cop

In September 2021, firearms officer Wayne Couzens was given life in jail for murdering the 33-year-old Everard in March 2020. He used his authority as a cop to arrest, handcuff and kidnap her.

Now the Met says plain clothes officers dealing with lone women will videocall headquarters, where someone will confirm the officer’s ID:

But as many people on Twitter were quick to point out, even if Couzens had done this he would have been confirmed as a real cop. Because that is precisely what he was:

Another Twitter user agreed that the new process did nothing to address the issue. And that the video itself was pretty creepy:

While another Twitter user was concerned whether the new ID process will tell you about the officer’s own background. Such as if he is has a history of sexual misconduct:

And another person pointed out how quickly the Met had created a narrative that Wayne Couzens was somehow an outsider, rather than what he was: an actively serving cop. And we should add, a serving cop with a long and identifiable history of sexual misconduct:

It seems like the Met Police will have to do a lot more than dream up these kind of madcap schemes if they want to win back the trust of women – or anyone else for that matter.

Featured image – Wikimedia Commons/Philius.

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