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The Times interview on stop and search

March 29, 2016

On Saturday The Times published an interview during which I discussed my experience of being stopped and searched by the police in London: "Hands up! MP held at roadside feared he would be shot". 

 

The article remarks that "although Theresa May, the home secretary, has tried to clamp down on discrimination, black people are still over four times more likely to be stopped and searched than white people. Black and ethnic minority drivers are also more likely to be stopped, but less likely to be arrested". 

 

I raised concerns about potential unconscious bias in the criminal justice system: "The vast majority of police officers are good people doing an extraordinary hard job... but what I do believe is that very decent people come to perceive black youth in a certain way. They become desensitised to the person and fall victim to the stereotype". 

 

"Unconscious bias happens if you bring the young black man smoking marijuana into the criminal justice system. Immediately there's then a criminal record and the repercussions are disastrous". 

 

 

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David Lammy

From Tottenham. For Tottenham.