People from black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds were more likely to be stopped and searched by Thames Valley Police officers, a report said.

Minutes from an internal force meeting looking at stop and search said that people from BAME communities were 3.9 per cent more likely to be stopped and searched than those from white backgrounds. 

Officers at the meeting, which included Thames Valley Police stop and search lead Supt Gavin Wong, heard that the force had completed a ‘deep dive into disproportionality’. Specifically, the work – which was not published in the meeting minutes – looked at the backgrounds of those arrested and against whom force or Tasers had been used. 

The publication of the meeting minutes followed reports by website GetReading that black people were four times more likely to be stopped and searched by the force in 2019/20 than white people. 

Responding to that story, Supt Wong said: “Stop and search is a crucial preventative tool which allows officers to allay or confirm suspicions about individuals without having to utilise the power of arrest. 

“This is important because the decision to take someone’s liberty away shouldn’t be taken lightly.”

The force was ‘fully committed’ to ensuring the power was used appropriately.

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