21st March 2023 

Like so many across London and the UK, we are disturbed by the findings of Baroness Casey's report into the Metropolitan Police. For women, though the findings are dreadful, they are unsurprising. They reflect what we already know to be true: a culture of misogyny is rife in the force, and we need urgent change now. 

Read Fawcett's open letter to Commissioner Mark Rowley of the Metropolitan Police.

Read our statement in full below.

Baroness Casey's report is a painful and unflinching account of the systemic failings of the Metropolitan Police. It makes clear that the country's largest police force has failed to take seriously the voices of women and particularly women of colour. It has also failed to deliver on its promise to prioritise the issue of violence against women and girls, and to recruit and retain officers that represent the diversity of London. It shines a light on a toxic culture within the Met which has allowed misogyny, racism, and homophobia to flourish and where victim blaming is common. While it is shocking that a majority of women in London do not have confidence in the Met to keep women and girls safe, it is hardly surprising. Women come into contact with the Police when they are vulnerable and it is clear that they are being failed by a force that should protect them. We must see urgent and radical change if policing by consent in London is to be restored.

"There have been many reports and reviews of the Met, going all the way back to the Macpherson Report more than 25 years ago, highlighting institutional failings - and the Met's response has been woefully inadequate: a belief that these issues come down to a few so-called ‘bad apples’ in the force. This defensiveness represents a total failure to address the culture that sustains perpetrators in the Met’s ranks.

"This report is necessary and important and we must ask what is the Met going to do now? Will we see the force demonstrating a genuine commitment to root and branch reform that is necessary to restore trust in the Police? Will this government commit to the investment required to truly transform this failing system? We repeat our calls to Commissioner Rowley to meet with us and other organisations who represent those the Met has marginalised, so he can be part of the solution and bring about genuine and lasting change within the Metropolitan Police.

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