Scots police diversity survey slammed as ‘waste of money’

PinkNews Staff Writer August 31, 2012
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A Tayside chief constable has been criticised for the cost of circulating a questionnaire asking people about their sexuality.

Police chief Justine Curran came was criticised after the questionnaire was sent to 3,600 households.

The four-page public-perception survey included questions such as: “What is your sexual orientation?” and “Do you currently, or have you ever, considered yourself as transgender?”

Local residents and politicians though, have condemned it as a waste of public money.

Robert Oxley, of the TaxPayers’ Alliance said to the Daily Record: “It is astounding at a time when savings have to be found that police chiefs should think these questionnaires in any way represent value for taxpayers’ money.”

Mid-Scotland and Fife Tory MSP Murdo Fraser said: “Tayside Police are entitled to survey the public about their experiences of crime.

“But you have to question why they need to know the sexuality or ethnic origin of those responding.

“Whether folk consider themselves transgender must surely be irrelevant to their views on fighting crime.”

One householder said to the paper: “It seems like a total invasion of privacy. They can’t claim it’s anonymous since it was addressed to me at my home.

They added: “What has my sexuality got to do with the police?

“If I was mugged, would it matter if I was a transgender Muslim or a bisexual Buddhist?”

The survey cost almost £3,000, and sought to get an idea of how people feel when being seen by a police officer.

A spokesman said: “We gather this information to enable us to monitor how people from different sections of the community perceive Tayside Police.

“Without monitoring, the force would not be able to measure improvements and remove practice or procedure which may impact negatively on some people.

“The survey will assist in providing an effective and fair police service to the diverse communities in Tayside.”


More: Daily Record, Justine Curran, murdo fraser, Robert Oxley, Scotland, taxpayers alliance, Tayside, Tayside Police

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