On 31 March two trustees of ECA, Oveta McInnes and Cedric Levy attended the Enfield Stop and Search Monitoring Group meeting. The group meet every 6 weeks normally at Edmonton Police Station (currently these are virtual meetings).
Stop and search data
The meetings are attended by senior police officers and members of the community. The group scrutinise Stop and Search records, compare them with other London boroughs. Issues of concern are raised and explanations sought. Lead Inspector Richard Falco and PC Melanie Hughes convened the meeting. There were seven Community members present including Oveta and Cedric.
Inspector Falco shared the Stop and Search data for the past 3 months from November 1st 2020 to January 31st 2021. We were given the data for the white, Asian and black ethnic groups and for males and females. Unfortunately ECA was not able to make a fair comparison of the data as we did not have the size of each ethnic group’s population. ECA requested this data for our next meeting. We also requested data for other ethnic groups such as the Turkish and Greek communities as they are a sizeable population in Enfield.
ECA shared the concerns of the disproportionate number of stop and searches faced by the black community in Enfield particularly young black males. The Inspector informed us that there are ‘hot spots’ in Enfield where more stops are made. The reasons given for Stop and Search are mainly for drugs, weapons and stolen property.
- 71% of stops require no further action
- 29% are positive stops leading to action such as arrests, community resolutions, FPN, PCR/Summons or a caution.
ECA is concerned at the high number of NFA and discussed the police having a more targeted approach to stop and search, to have better outcomes. ECA questioned what measures were in place to have fairer stop and search procedures rather than overpolicing black males.
Changes to police training
Inspector Falco confirmed the police are developing a new approach to training of officers to improve the relationships with the communities in Enfield. This includes de-escalation, unconscious bias, understanding lived experience and knowledge of historic key events such as Stephen Lawrence murder, Cherry Groce, the Broadwater Farm Riots.
One of the catalysts for change was the recent over aggressive - Stop and Search of a school boy in uniform, which went viral on the internet.
ECA is keen to have dialogue with the local police, to make a difference and improve accountability to the communities they serve.
Chair, Enfield Caribbean Association