'Let me sack bad police officers quicker' says Met chief, with thousands of London cops simply not doing their jobs

19 November 2022, 07:13

Met Police chief Sir Mark Rowley has called for greater powers to sack bad police officers
Met Police chief Sir Mark Rowley has called for greater powers to sack bad police officers. Picture: Getty

By Kit Heren

London's police chief has called on the government to make it easier for the Metropolitan Police to sack underperforming officers, with one in ten unable to do their job properly.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Sir Mark Rowley, Met police commissioner, said the process to get rid of police officers and other public servants was too bureaucratic.

Some 3,000 police officers are not working fully because of concerns over their performance, or mental or physical health reasons.

Another 500 are suspended or are on restricted duties after being accused of serious misconduct.

Police officers arrest an environmental protester during a demonstration
Police officers arrest an environmental protester during a demonstration. Picture: Getty

"We can’t deal with a workforce where such a big proportion are not properly deployable," Sir Mark told the Times.

"Many of these people, they can’t work shifts, or they can’t work many hours in a day, or they can only have limited contact with the public, maybe because of anxiety-related issues.”

Sir Mark, who took up his job in September, said that the Met would always want to support staff who are having mental health problems or who are hurt in the line of duty.

Read more: 'I've shed a tear over misconduct report': Met chief Sir Mark Rowley says hundreds of officers should be sacked

Read more: Hundreds of serving police officers should be booted out for criminal behaviour, Met boss says

But he added: “There does come a point that, if you can’t be match fit to be a police officer, then it’s challenging for us in that it’s a large number of people we can’t properly deploy.”

He also wants to have greater powers to deal with racist or sexist police, following the Sarah Everard murder scandal last year.

But Sir Mark said that the Met's problems were not limited to those officers accused of serious misconduct, adding that it is also too hard for bosses to get rid of staff who are simply not good enough.

Mark Rowley needs to create safe spaces for whistle-blowers, says Shabnam Chowdri

The police currently have a drawn-out six-stage dismissal process in place, and only six police officers were fired last year for poor performance. But Sir Mark said his lawyers have advised him this could be curtailed.

He said: “Some of that performance is someone day to day doing a bad job, and some of it is people who aren’t fully deployable, who have had all the opportunities, all the support possible but it’s just not working.

“And we can’t as an organisation exist if we can’t deploy 10 or 20 per cent of our people.”

Watch Again: Nick Ferrari questions Met Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley

Sir Mark said that he would set a date for the NHS and social services to manage cases that involve mental health issues, rather than police, freeing up his officers to focus on criminal activity.

He said: "We’re going to be much more focused about what really is the police work that we ought to be doing. There’s lots of work around crime that the police ought to be doing but aren’t.

"And at the same time, there’s lots of work that is health and social care work that others can do, and should be doing, that we’re doing instead. It’s not that those other areas aren’t important, but they’re not police work.”

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

England players return home after Euros final heartbreak amid speculation over Southgate's future as Three Lions boss

England players return home after Euros final heartbreak amid speculation over Southgate's future as Three Lions boss

Spanish police reportedly carried on searching for the missing teen despite publicly calling off the search

How Spanish police 'discreetly' continued looking for Jay Slater's body after publicly calling off search

Live
The remains were found near Jay Slater's holiday rental

Live updates: Body found in Jay Slater hunt - Police recover young man's remains from village cliffside

Jay Slater Tenerife timeline: Hunt for missing British teen Jay Slater enters fifth day - here's what we know

Timeline of Jay Slater's disappearance: Everything we know as remains are found 29 days after he went missing

Human remains were found by police looking for missing Jay Slater

Human remains found 'in a very inaccessible area' by police searching for missing 19-year-old Jay Slater

Police have launched a new search for the body of Muriel McKay

'This is our last chance': Police launch new search to find Muriel McKay's body

Flight carrying hungover England fans from Euros makes emergency landing after 'undefined smell' wafts through cabin

Flight carrying hungover England fans from Euros makes emergency landing after 'undefined smell' wafts through cabin

The Prince and Princess of Wales have issued a new image

William and Kate hail 'inspirational' England team as they share photo of Charlotte and Louis watching Euros final

Married school chaplain banned from teaching over illicit relationship with ‘very vulnerable’ student

Married school chaplain banned from teaching over illicit relationship with ‘very vulnerable’ student

'Terrible shot': Trump gunman Thomas Matthew Crooks

Would-be Trump assassin tried to join school shooting club but was rejected for being a ‘comically bad’ shot

England manager Gareth Southgate leaving the team hotel in Berlin, Germany

They're coming home: Forlorn Gareth Southgate and England squad leave Berlin hotel after Euro's heartbreak

Thomas Matthew Crooks pictured in his high school year book from 2022

Thomas Matthew Crooks: Everything we know about the Trump gunman described as a 'bullied loner’

King Charles has sent a private letter to Donald Trump after he was shot in the ear

King Charles sends private message of support to Donald Trump after former president survives assassination attempt

Gareth Southgate after England's defeat against Spain

Gareth Southgate tipped for new honour as his future remains in the balance following Euro's heartbreak

Jay Slater's mother condemns 'vile' conspiracies in statement a month on from teen's disappearance in Tenerife

Jay Slater's mum slams 'vile' conspiracies a month on from teen's disappearance - as new search team land in Tenerife

Tributes have been paid to Shannen Doherty after her death from cancer aged 53

Tributes paid to Beverly Hills 90210 star Shannen Doherty as she dies aged 53 following breast cancer battle