Scottish Liberal Democrats have called for action from Police Scotland and the Scottish Government after the party published damning statistics which showed only 1 percent of all police officers in Scotland identify as black, Asian, and minority ethnic (BAME).
Figures obtained by the Scottish Lib Dems using freedom of information laws found that – despite 7.6 percent of Scotland’s population being BAME – there are no BAME officers in the top two ranks and only two across the top four ranks held by the 446 most senior officers in Scotland.
In total, there are only 175 BAME officers out of a total 17,515 police officers.
Figures for police staff showed that there are no BAME in the top five grades, and only 69 out of 5963 staff overall.
Commenting, Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Alison McInnes MSP said:
“These are appalling figures which are in no way reflective of the diverse nature of Scotland’s population.
“Only 1 percent of all officers are from BAME backgrounds. It is the same for police staff. There are only two BAME officers across the top four ranks held by the 446 most senior officers in Scotland.
“This is a travesty which warrants immediate action from Police Scotland and the Scottish Government. Only recently an SPF submission to a Holyrood committee found members felt that Police Scotland paid “lip service” to BME issues.
“It is worrying that some officers believed they received better support in legacy forces because it was easier to interact with senior officers. The centralised nature of the new force will only compound these problems.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats urge both Police Scotland and the Scottish Government to set out how they propose to address the woeful representation of communities in our police force.”