Sexism, racism in Scotland Yard: Indian-origin policewoman’s claims swept under the rug

Nighat Hubbard, An Indian-origin Muslim female officer, was among three policewomen suing Scotland Yard over racism and sexism claims.

Police constable Usha Evans, detective constable Nighat Hubbard – the Metropolitan Police's first Muslim policewoman to be awarded an honour by the Queen – and Hubbard's colleague Catherine Bell alleged they had faced discrimination from white male officers, media sources reported.

New Scotland Yard entrance in London.
New Scotland Yard entrance in London. Photo courtesy: Wikimedia

The allegations made by the three officers included white colleagues being allowed to work on more complex investigations, while the women were sidelined. The allegations date between 2013 and 2014. A judge ruled that it would be "just and equitable" for Hubbard to bring the legal claim after the Met Police blocked her claim in the employment tribunal.

An internal inquiry by Scotland Yard found the men had "no case to answer", but the plaintiffs described it as a "whitewash".

Among the officers accused of discrimination was former detective inspector Mick Standing, who, according to Hubbard's witness statement, Bell reported that Standing had told another female Asian officer, "You need to grow a beard, shout more and be more masculine". Standing, who was allowed to retire and join the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), denies the claims and said he had been "completely exonerated" by a Met investigation. 

Hubbard also accused another white, male officer who she claims mocked Evans' religion.

Hubbard also alleged that the anti-corruption command Directorate of Professional Standards (DPS) investigation that followed was a "sham and a cover-up". Her claims against the DPS will now form part of the case to be heard by an employment tribunal this year.

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