The Commission for Racial Equality's (CRE) damning report into race equality in police forces in England and Wales shows that training alone is not enough to create a culture of diversity in any business, according to HR experts.
Under the Race Relations Act, all police forces and authorities as well as all public bodies have a statutory duty to produce a race equality scheme. But the CRE's interim report found that more than 90 per cent of police race equality schemes fail to meet minimum legal requirements, including the duty to monitor employment.
Trevor Phillips, chair of the CRE, has now threatened court action against 14 police forces and eight police authorities unless they produce lawful schemes within 90 days.
Sir David Calvert-Smith, who compiled the CRE report, found that diversity training gave officers little understanding of what constitutes racial discrimination, how it can lead to an abuse of police powers and failed to support officers challenging racism in the workplace.
Martin Tiplady, HR director at the Metropolitan Police, told Personnel Today the Met was working hard to put systems in place to create a culture of diversity.
"We have a long way to go," he said. "The emphasis is now on making the systems work to create the culture that is required."
Satya Kartara, director of diversity & inclusion at Royal Mail, said training was just a small part of promoting diversity in and employers needed to embed it firmly as part of the business.
"What you need to do is back [diversity training] with visible and strong leadership from the top and combine it with local action," she said. "Every manager needs to have individual responsibility and objectives, as with anything else they deliver."
Tess Finch-Lees, director of global diversity at the Global Effectiveness Group, said diversity plans need to mainstream good practice into the performance management process, policies, procedures and practice.
She said businesses then had to be prepared to hold people at all levels to account.
The CRE report findings include:
- All 43 police forces had produced a race equality scheme
- Only one of the 15 schemes selected for detailed scrutiny reached CRE minimum standards
- One in three of the 15 f