Sadiq Khan backs calls to let police commissioner sack unfit officersAugust 10, 2023
Sadiq Khan backs calls for Met Police commissioner to be given the power to sack corrupt officers
- The Mayor of London backed Met Police commissioner Sir Mark Rowley’s calls
- Sadiq Khan said ‘there’s no excuse’ for delays in pushing through the reforms
The Mayor of London has backed calls for Scotland Yard’s commissioner to be given the power to sack police officers who are unfit to serve.
Sir Mark Rowley, who leads Britain’s biggest police force, called on ministers to urgently push through legislation that would give chiefs dismissal powers instead of independent lawyers – who he referred to as ‘fundamentally soft.’
Sadiq Khan described his comments as an ‘important intervention,’ adding: ‘A vital part of police reform is making it easier to root out and sack corrupt officers.
‘There’s no excuse for further delay from ministers.’
The mayor said he had submitted draft legislation to the Government in spring that would mean officers convicted of a serious criminal offence could be automatically dismissed.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan (pictured) backed calls to give Scotland Yard’s commissioner the power to fire police officers who are unfit to serve
‘Government inaction is making it harder for police chiefs to do their job,’ he added.
Sir Mark took charge last September and vowed to purge the Met of rogue officers following a series of scandals, including the murder of Sarah Everard by firearms officer Wayne Couzens, and parliamentary protection officer David Carrick being unmasked as one of Britain’s worst rapists.
The commissioner has repeatedly said he is hamstrung when trying to sack officers unfit to serve, however, as the final say on gross misconduct cases falls to legally qualified chairs.
Sir Mark told the Times: ‘I’ve got a big mission to sort out here and I’m in a hurry to get on with it, and it’s frustrating when that’s held up by others, such as getting this legislation right.
Metropolitan Police commissioner Sir Mark Rowley (pictured) has repeatedly said he is hamstrung when trying to sack officers who are unfit to serve as cases are decided by qualified chairs
‘This is slowing us down and we’re building up big backlogs of cases.
‘This is a national issue, meaning that there will be hundreds of officers who would have been sacked by officer-chaired panels but are still serving across the country.’
A Home Office spokesman said: ‘Officers who fall seriously short of the standards expected have no place in our police, and we must ensure they can be dismissed as swiftly as possible.
‘That is why we launched our dismissals review, which we will publish shortly.’
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