Encountered police culture keeps officers from challenging boss, says disgusting guard

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley said police 'must change' (PA Wire)

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley said police ‘must change’ (PA Wire)

The Met Police’s culture discourages officers from “challenging their boss”, the head of the country’s anti-slander watchdog warned on Tuesday.

The intervention of Lord Jonathan Evans, chairman of the independent Commission on Standards of Public Life, comes as the Commissioner of the Armed Forces, Sir Mark Rowley, struggles to restore her reputation after a string of scandals.

Lord Evans described the setbacks in the case of disgraced PC David Carrick, who admitted to multiple rapes, as “utterly awful” and “shocking”, adding that it underscores the Met’s major “cultural challenges”.

“At times I felt that the traditional, fairly hierarchical command model within the police force did not make it easy to speak up,” said Lord Evans, the former director general of MI5. “Challenging your boss comes with some sort of cultural inhibition because it won’t necessarily go well and I’m not sure that’s helpful.”

After a nearly year-long investigation that included interviews with the heads of the Met and other police forces, the standards committee today released a report calling for “strong ethical values ​​to be woven into every aspect” of how government bodies and other public institutions operate organizations.

The committee found that while a “sound ethical culture” should be an integral part of how organizations operate, all too often leaders take action in a crisis.

In the aftermath of Carrick’s crimes, Sir Mark has announced nine mission objectives that he believes will bring change and transformation to the beleaguered forces within two years.

Armed officer Carrick, 48, pleaded guilty to 49 criminal charges as it emerged he faced complaints about his behavior before joining the armed forces 22 years ago and many other times throughout his career, but no action was taken.

The Met is also facing questions about how Pc Wayne Couzens, who was nicknamed “The Rapist” by former colleagues, was able to kidnap, rape and murder Sarah Everard in March 2021.

The armed forces were again shaken last year after a report revealed bullying, discrimination, racist and sexist behavior at Charing Cross police station.

Lord Evans said Sir Mark “did the right thing… he didn’t try to defend them at all. He said; “Look, we absolutely understand that this is a terrible situation that it undermines trust.”

“But it won’t be fast. It’s a big organization, it takes time, and it’s not something you can turn around in a few months, but you have a leader there who absolutely nails his colors to the wall.

Lord Evans also said the political turmoil caused by the partygate scandal and the Owen Paterson storm could have been prevented if leaders had paid more attention to issues of standards.

Dr Ian Peters, director of the Institute of Business Ethics, which contributed to the report, said: “There is simply no excuse for any organization whose culture stops people from speaking up out of fear or distrust of the system. This only encourages bad practices and unacceptable behavior.

“The tone is set from above, but leaders fall short of their responsibilities if managers in the organization are not trained and empowered to maintain an ethical culture and prevent toxic behavior.

“Senior leaders are the custodians of organizational culture and I welcome today’s report which highlights their responsibility to address unacceptable behavior in public sector organizations.”

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