The interior secretary explained to the new Scotland Yard commissioner the great improvements she is asking for in the culture and performance of her force.
Priti Patel writes in a letter to Sir Mark Rowley: “It is absolutely vital that trust is restored and that a visible and responsive police that cut crime is at the forefront.
“I expect the Metropolitan Police under your guidance to get the right foundation and deliver the first-class service you expect from it. “
Sir Mark begins his work a week after his predecessor’s controversial departure Lady Cressida Dickwho quit after clashing with London Mayor Sadiq Khan, although she was supported in a recent independent report on her resignation.
The Interior Minister writes: “I also expect you, as commissioner, to promote better leadership and higher standards at all levels across the force.”
Under Dame Cressida, the metropolitan police forces were chastised for a series of scandals that led to questions about her culture and standards; the rape and murder of Sara Everard from the off-duty PC Wayne Couzens, the shooting and sharing of photographs of two sisters killed by the agents, the sharing racist and misogynistic text messages by Charing Cross officers police station and the search of a young black student.
The force is one of six put into special measures by Her Majesty’s Police Inspectorate the Inspectorate of Police and Fire and Rescue Services which recently convicted police in England and Wales for poor performance, particularly burglary , robbery and other acquisition crimes.
Ms. Patel writes: “That report found that on too many occasions the Met, as a force, fails to get the right ground when dealing with these crimes, which cause immense distress to the public.
“It is deeply disappointing and unacceptable that many police forces are not up to par.
“You know there is an essential requirement in all police to raise the bar and get the foundation right.
“As a major force in the country, it is right that the Met lead by example on how to tackle crimes of this kind and also crack down on crime.”
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Ms. Patel also tells the new commissioner that she expects him to make sure the Met reaches its target of 4,557 new officer recruits and increases non-police personnel by March next year.
He adds in his letter: “It will undoubtedly be a difficult time for the force, but I have full confidence that under your guidance these challenges can be overcome.”
Sir Mark retired from Scotland Yard in 2017 as assistant commissioner after leading the Counter Terror Command and being beaten to the top spot by Dame Cressida.
He was appointed in July and said at the time: “Our mission is to lead the renewal of the police with consensus, which has been so badly dented in recent years since trust and confidence have waned.
“We will provide more trust, less crime and high standards for London and beyond, and will work with diverse communities in London as we together renew the uniquely British invention of ‘police by consent’.”