Scottish Executive Justice Department
Stephen Lawrence An Action
Plan for Scotland
UNISON Scotland Response
The wider implications of McPherson;
Specific Comments on the Action Plan
Openness, Accountability and
Restoration of Confidence; Training: Complaints: Stop & Search:
Recruitment & Retention
UNISON Scotland welcomes the opportunity to comment on the proposed
Action Plan for Scotland.
UNISON Scotland is the country's largest union with 150,000
members employed in Scotland's public services. We are the
major union organising both police civilian staff in Scotland and
staff employed within the local government part of the criminal
UNISON Scotland also has a significant black members' organisation
with an active Scottish black members committee and conference.
The wider implications of McPherson
UNISON Scotland notes that the Action Plan mainly deals with the
implications of the Macpherson report for the Police Service.
While this is vitally important the report also has major implications
for the public services in Scotland, for which the Scottish Executive
has responsibility. UNISON Scotland has members in the NHS, local
government, further and higher education institutions, housing service,
etc, and in each of these sectors racism and institutional racism
have a direct and indirect impact. Often, black workers are the
lowest paid and least valued with promotion and career advancement
We would welcome an indication of the action the Scottish Executive
is planning to tackle racism and institutional racism throughout
Scotland's public services.
UNISON Scotland welcomes the setting up of a Steering Group to
monitor the implementation of the Macpherson recommendations. We
believe there is a gap, however, in the composition of the group
and would argue for the inclusion of black workers either through
the STUC or through UNISON.
Specific Comments on the Action Plan
Openness, Accountability and Restoration
UNISON Scotland believes there is a case for Scottish Ministers
setting broad priorities and performance targets for the Scottish
Police Service. We welcome the commitment by Scottish Ministers
to mainstream equal opportunities through public sector bodies generally
and would seek further information on the timeframe the Scottish
Executive is working towards in terms of consultation and implementation.
7. UNISON Scotland believes the Scottish Executive must take whatever
steps are required to ensure Police Authorities reflect ethnic or
cultural mix. We believe that proportionality in terms of representation
would assist confidence building among ethnic communities with their
54. UNISON Scotland particularly welcomes the Scottish Executive's
acceptance of this point. We believe, however, there is a need for
training in racial awareness and valuing cultural diversity throughout
the public services not just in those associated within the criminal
justice system. Early action is required to put this in place.
58. UNISON believes that serious complaints against police officers
should be independently investigated and supports the setting up
of an independent Scottish Police Complaints Authority. This is
essential to retain public confidence in the police service.
Stop and Search
61. UNISON Scotland disagrees with the Scottish Executive's
proposed course of action. We believe that Police Services should
ensure that there is a record made of all stops' and
stop and searches'. The resulting collated information
is the best means of determining whether there is a problem in this
Recruitment and Retention
64. UNISON Scotland believes that Police Forces should be set meaningful
targets for the recruitment, progression and retention of minority
police officers and police civilians. This kind of information should
be collected periodically by the Scottish Executive and made public.
Positive action should be taken by Police Forces to meet their targets.
UNISON Scottish Secretary