We know that in Lambeth, Black people are more than twice as likely to be stopped by the police than White people. In 2020, only 25% of stop and search of all ethnic groups across London led to further action. The disproportionate use of stop and search powers on Black people have created tension between our communities and the police for decades.
Black Thrive Lambeth and King’s College London are researching the impact of stop and search on the mental health of Black young people. Black Thrive Lambeth have partnered with the ESRC Centre for Society and Mental Health to use the data they have gathered on the REACH Study which highlights the mental health of young people in South London.
Listen to our Community research Coordinator Nathaniel Martin give an overview of the project.
The Stop and Search Project is a Mayor’s Office encouraged and historically supported project. On the 13th of November 2020 the Mayor’s Action Plan recognised the impact and prevalence of systemic racism within public institutions and aimed to increase the levels of trust that Black Londoners have in the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).
The plan also acknowledged that within the Black community there was a feeling that the Metropolitan Police Service fails to understand Black communities, neither is it representative of them.
In May 2020, 2561 Stop and Searches took place in Lambeth, 67% (1759) were carried out with Black people, compared to only 23% (595) who were White (Metropolitan Police, 2021). This is despite Black people making up 30% of the population in Lambeth, compared to White people who make up 55% of the Lambeth population. The disproportionate use of police powers against the Black community is very evident.
At the centre of Black Thrive Lambeth, we amplify and embed the voices of our community to drive meaningful change, facilitate partnerships with key system players, to redress the imbalance of power and inequality felt by Black Lambeth communities, so that Black people thriving is the norm.
By partnering with King’s College London and the Centre for Society and Mental Health, Black Thrive Lambeth hopes to add some meaningful data and insight to the conversation around the practice of stop and search and its effects on Black young people.
We hope to: