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Increase in stop and search: Will black Brits be targeted?

PICTURED: Sadiq Khan (Photo credit: PA)

THE MAYOR of London has refused to provide reassurance that young black people will not be disproportionately targeted by police during increased stop and search.

Sadiq Khan last week announced police will be conducting more ‘intelligence-led’ stop and search in response to spiralling knife crime in the capital.

Black people are eight times more likely than white people to be stopped and searched, according to recent figures.

London Assembly member Shaun Bailey yesterday (Jan 18) asked Sadiq Khan for a reassurance that the figure would not increase, but the Mayor repeatedly avoided answering the question.

Speaking after the meeting, Bailey said: “I was extremely disappointed in the Mayor’s refusal to give a simple reassurance this morning. I fully accept that stop and search is a powerful and important tool. But as things stand, black people are eight times more likely than white people to be stopped and searched – a statistic which is not supported by convictions or arrests.

“I asked the Mayor to guarantee that figure would not rise even further with the increase in stop and search he ordered last week. Sadly for London’s black community, Sadiq Khan simply avoided the question and refused five times to give me that guarantee.

“80 people were killed on London’s streets last year because of knife crime. Tough measures are needed but the Mayor must take the affected communities with him if there is going to be any kind of long term change. My concern is this policy, if taken in the wrong direction, will simply alienate communities from the police and make things worse.”

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