• Monday, November 28, 2022


Kim Johnson MP accuses Met Police of racism

Kim Johnson MP

By: Pramod Thomas

LABOUR MP Kim Johnson has accused the Metropolitan police of institutional racism after she and her family were stopped by officers in central London last month, reported The Guardian.

The MP said they had arrived in Covent Garden near the end of the England v Scotland Euro 2020 match when they found themselves surrounded by police officers.

According to the report, Johnson MP, her son and his friend – both black men in their 30s – and their wives had just stepped out of a taxi to go to a restaurant.

“There were loads of Scottish football supporters, who were involved in antisocial behaviour – being leery – in the same vicinity as us, but these police officers just targeted in on us,” she told the newspaper.

When asked why they were being stopped and questioned, Johnson said police told her that her son’s friend – who was wearing a distinctive yellow jacket – fitted a description they had been given.

But when Johnson revealed her identity, the officers “just walked off”, the report added.

Johnson became Liverpool’s first black MP when she was elected for Liverpool Riverside in 2019.

She said that the heavy-handed approach police had towards the black community which had caused the Liverpool 8 uprisings, also known as the Toxteth riots, remained just as prevalent today, even after forty years.

The MP said in July 1981, her brother was “one of many young black men that were picked up and accused of doing something that they didn’t do”, and that her son and his friend had been stopped and searched on multiple occasions.

Johnson added that the distrust between police and the black community was getting worse in some areas.

Her comments echoed those made by Dawn Butler, another black Labour MP, who was stopped by the police last summer.

“It is totally unacceptable that you have somebody like Cressida Dick, who does not call it out for what it is, which is institutional racism – that people are being racially profiled every single day,” Johnson told The Guardian.

The Met told the newspaper that the force was unable to comment on specific incidents.

“On Friday, 18 June, the Met had a large number of officers in central London to provide a visible presence as part of the policing operation for the Euros 2020,” a statement read.

“These officers ensured the safety of those enjoying the football, or a night out in the West End, and responded to any reports of alleged criminality.”

Eastern Eye

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