Release and StopWatch launch survey on disproportionate policing

Today Release and StopWatch have launched a survey asking people across the UK whether the police in their local area do a good job or not. The results of the survey will then be used in a report on disproportionate policing in the UK that will be published later this year by Release in partnership with the Mannheim Centre for Criminology. The more we know about people’s experiences, the easier it will be to push for reform in the UK’s laws, so if you fill in the survey you will be helping to make a big difference.

Black people are 9 times more likely to be stopped and searched for drugs, even though black people are less likely to use drugs than white people. And shockingly, black children are over 14 times more likely to be stop and searched for drugs than white children. Disproportionate policing in the UK is a very worrying issue, and the better informed we are the better prepared we will be to campaign against it.

Release, the national centre of expertise on drugs and drugs law, has been advocating fair and more compassionate drug laws for 40 years. This survey and the report will be a crucial element of the charity’s campaign ‘Drugs – Time For Better Laws’. As a part of this campaign Release also wrote to the Prime Minister and published ‘A Quiet Revolution: Drug Decriminalisation Policies in Practice Across the Globe’, a report which explores how different policies have worked in different countries and concludes that drug policies have little impact on the levels of drug use in a nation.

StopWatch is a coalition of legal experts, academics, citizens and civil liberties campaigners. They aim to address excess and disproportionate stop and search, and ensure fair, effective policing for everyone.

The Mannheim Centre for Criminology is a multidisciplinary research centre associated with the London School of Economics. It provides a forum for criminology, including courses and a large number of conferences, seminars and other public events.

Take the survey

Read Release’s report ‘A Quiet Revolution’