Race and Diversity is continually monitored throughout the police and PCSO assessment centre day. During the role-plays, despite popular belief NOT all of them contain inappropriate behaviour displayed by the role-actor that must be challenged. Race and Diversity is your ability to remain impartial and considerate towards others. (It’s not just about challenging inappropriate behaviour)
Even in the role-plays where challenging behaviour is not required, the scenario’s still contain elements or situations whereby you could act biased or with prejudice. Let’s consider the following example:
You are dealing with a complaint from a customer about the actions of the security team. A child was recently lost in the centre. The security team then acted in accordance and followed the ‘lost child’ policy. They were all dispatched with the appropriate description to look for the child and all CCTV camera’s were used. The child was eventually found by another member of the public. The customer wants the security team disciplined for not finding the child. Do you think the security team should be disciplined?
The answer is ‘NO’. Given that they acted in accordance and followed the ‘lost child’ policy it would be unfair to suggest or agree for disciplinary action to be considered. Thus, if you agreed with the customer and suggested that action would be taken against the security team, this could result in a ‘D’ grade for diversity. Clearly, although the policy was followed, perhaps a review of the policy is required…
Let’s have a look at another possible scenario:
You are dealing with a complaint from a customer about the actions of a Customer Service Officer. The Customer Service Officer recently approached the child of the customer in the centre as they were climbing on a temporary wall. The centre has a policy that does not permit anyone climbing on walls. A statement from the Customer Service Officer confirms the situation took place and they did ask the child to remove themselves. During the course of the role-play the role actor informs you that the Customer Service Officer shouted at the child and asked them to remove themselves from the wall for Health and Safety reasons. The customer wants the Customer Service Officer sacked. Do you think the Customer Service Officer should be sacked?
The answer is ‘No action will be taken at this time’. Although they have enforced the policy, you should be concerned that the Customer Service Officer shouted (this is unprofessional), so you will want to speak to them before any decision is made. Again, if you agreed that they should be sacked, or completely defend the actions of guard, you run the risk of being awarded a grade ‘D’ in Race and Diversity for being biased. Clearly, although the policy was followed, it would be advisable to speak with the Customer Service Officer about the allegation of ‘shouting’ before any decision is made. You should reassure the role-actor that action will be taken if the guard’s behaviour following your investigation is found to be inappropriate. But until they have been spoken too, no action will be taken.
This article was written by our Police Recruitment Director. He is the owner and course tutor of police-recruitment-exercisese.co.uk a training provider for candidates interested in passing the police application and assessment centre process.
This article has been written by former police recruitment manager David Vidgen.